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The Good, Bad and Ugly of WSU’s 58-7 win over New Mexico State

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Mostly good!

NCAA Football: New Mexico State at Washington State James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning. Not a bad way to start! Your Washington State Cougars came out roaring on offense Saturday evening, and stayed on the gas pedal until the game was well in hand. Anthony Gordon had one of the best debuts ever for a Cougar quarterback, and the defense bent several times but didn’t break enroute to a resounding 58-7 victory over the New Mexico State Aggies.

WSU’s receivers were as dominant as we’ve come to expect, Max Borghi destroyed nearly everyone and everything in his path and even the kicking game was pretty solid. And while we know that the path will get considerably more rocky in the coming weeks (though certainly not next week), Saturday night was a pretty great way to lift the lid off the 2019 Cougar football season.

So, what did we like, and what didn’t we like?

The Good

  • How’s this for the offense’s first half of the season? - Touchdown, Touchdown, Touchdown, Touchdown, Touchdown. Not bad!
  • Then the first two possessions of the second half were touchdown, field goal. Also not bad!
  • In his first career start, all Anthony Gordon did was complete his first 15 passes. Among them were touchdown passes of 41 and 48 yards. Finishing with 12 YPA is decent, I guess.
  • Awesome moment for Rodrick Fisher, torching a hapless DB and scoring a touchdown on his first career catch.
  • Dezmon Patmon is still a beast, in case anyone was wondering.
  • Continuing with the juggernaut of an offense, Max Borghi surpassed 100 yards for the first time his young career, and got there in just 12 carries.
  • Have yourself a day, Blake Mazza! Perfect on seven PATs and three kicks, while nailing a career-long 50-yarder in the process.
  • No fumbles or interceptions, and +3 in the turnover department is always a good way to start the season. Then again, it helps when opposing defenders rarely get close enough to take the ball away.
  • Speaking of those three turnovers, two were the result of athletic plays by Marcus Strong and Hank Pladson.
  • Wait, Hank Pladson? Yep! The guy whose name sounds like someone you’d call to unclog a backed up sewage line made a great bobbling interception, then ran it back 15 yards to boot!
  • Great strip at the goal line to prevent a garbage-time New Mexico State touchdown, but if I’m being honest I started to feel bad for those poor guys late in the game.
  • Speaking of that strip, hell of a job by Tyrese Ross to bow up and drive the ball carrier backward, when he could just as easily have given up on the play.
  • Congratulations to Gage Gubrud for getting in on the touchdown act as well.

The Bad

  • Yeah, I know the defense only gave up seven points (and those points shouldn’t even have been allowed), but there were far too many instances of opposing players running free, and way way way too many missed tackles.
  • It’s a good thing they have another tune-up before Houston, because if that defense shows up to face D’Eriq King, the offense will need to score 60.
  • The last thing we all need is the offensive line allowing the quarterback to get killed, and that’s damn near what happened in the third quarter when Gordon took a wicked shot that resulted in his cut finger.
  • Not exactly a banner day for the Pac-12 Networks broadcast. First off, wtf is with that symphony music that accompanies the football highlight commercials? Whose idea was that abomination?
  • Can Chad Brown never ever pollute my television again? How many times does he have to refer to WSU as the Huskies before the producer takes his headset away?
  • Pretty great direction with that sideline report coming during the Travell Harris touchdown. It was so poorly-timed that it took us a good 10 seconds to realize we weren’t watching a highlight.
  • Solid job by the officials and replay crew on New Mexico State’s “touchdown.” I put quotes on it because it was plain as day that the runner’s elbow hit the ground, which means the runner is down by contact.
  • If those two events weren’t special on their own, the TV crew and officials teamed up for a truly embarrassing moment later in the game on the Marcus Strong interception. First, the camera work was so bad that you couldn’t see the interception at all. Then the officials decided to review the play even though there wasn’t any angle that showed the interception. Back slaps all around, fellas.
  • Special recognition of NMSU’s coach who, trailing 28-7 in the second quarter, decided to wave the white flag by punting from the WSU 37. Who wouldn’t want to play for that guy??!!

The Ugly

  • Jahad Woods going down late in a blowout, with the whole season in front of us is a monumental bummer. No Jalen Thompson and now likely no Woods for a while makes the defense’s situation quite perilous.
  • Also lol Oregon Ducks.

Football

Analysis: Anthony Gordon dazzles as No. 23 Washington State routs New Mexico State 58-7 | The Spokesman-Review
The Cougars started slow on defense, conceding a touchdown on the Aggies’ second drive of the game, but regrouped to pitch a shutout for the final 51 minutes.

3 takes from Washington State’s 58-7 victory over New Mexico State | The Spokesman-Review
Anthony Gordon’s performance, strong second-half defense and getting Max Borghi the football stood out in the Cougars’ win over the Aggies.

John Blanchette: Washington State shining brighter than ever standing just outside of the spotlight | The Spokesman-Review
All in all, it’s pretty good being Washington State these days, and not just because the scoreboard read 58-7 in the Cougars’ favor on Saturday night.

Washington State hands New Mexico State season opening loss
New Mexico State’s offense moved the ball early against the Cougars with 131 yards in the first quarter. But NM State finished with 317 total yards and Aggies quarterback Josh Adkins was intercepted twice in the second half.

Saturday Night Five: Oregon buckles in the fourth, USC tries to lose but fails, Washington rolls and injuries mount
Another loss to the SEC and more mystifying decisions by Trojans coach Clay Helton

This Week in Parenting

We officially have 6th and 2nd graders in the house, as this week brought the return of school. Usually I welcome it, but this year their summer camp supplied lunches, which meant mom and I didn’t have to make them. Now we’re back to doing that four nights per week.

Mom likes them to make a sign on the first day, denoting their grade and career ambitions.

A few years ago, the oldest boy had a sign that said he wanted to be a Marine, so we’re making progress! The younger kid is more concerned with sporting killer socks.

We accompanied the 6th grader to his different classes on Monday, as part of the open house that was twice as long as it needed to be. But anyway, here was what greeted us when we walked into Language Arts.

Gonna be a long year!

The 6th grader turned 11 this week, and he only asked for a couple birthday gifts. The grandparents supplied one of them, which prompted the question parents have had to answer for generations, “Dad, can we mount your phone to the drone?” But even though he was rewarded with a piece of modern technology, on Sunday he is getting the other of his two asks: a tour of the Maginot Line.

He remains a septuagenerian at heart.

Beer

Best beer I had this week: New Holland Brewing makes a pretty solid barrel-aged stout called Dragon’s Milk. They also happen to make several offshoots, one of which is Raspberry Hibiscus. I know, it sounds lame, but man oh man is it ever tasty.

Millennials ditch beer because of 'fat,' nutritional concerns - Business Insider Deutschland
Almost a third of millennials say they're cutting back on alcohol, up from 21% who said they were drinking less alcohol in 2018.

Non-Sports

Gonna go on record as saying this will be the last time I link an article with the following sentence:

Bang Bros did not return a request for comment.

Mia Khalifa: Actress paid just $12,000 for years-old work that remains atop porn rankings - The Washington Post
The adult-entertainment industry — an enormous web of YouTube-like streaming sites, live-camera models and an increasing amount of private social media channels — is a murky financial and bandwidth juggernaut.