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Three things to watch as Washington State welcomes BYU (and game thread!)

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Let’s play some football.

PULLMAN, WA - OCTOBER 16: Washington State defensive coordinator Jake Dickert locks arms with teammates prior to a PAC 12 conference matchup between the Stanford Cardinal and the Washington State Cougars on October 16, 2021, at Martin Stadium in Pullman, WA. Jack Ellis/CougCenter

Who’s ready for an actual WSU football game? I know I am after what went on this week. After a week of Rolo reactions, we got good news yesterday in that WSU can show off a snazzy indoor facility in the next few years thanks to this week’s announcement that WSU hit its target goal for the Indoor Practice Facility (IPF). Fare thee well, bubble.

Anyway, the Washington State version of the Cougars welcomes the BYU version of the Cougars in Jake Dickert’s debut as acting coach. A Reddit user came across something interesting this week: Dickert is the third WSU head man to debut against BYU.

To learn a little about BYU, make sure you read Craig’s preview. WSU should have opportunities on offense. Speaking of offense, the team swiftly filled the vacancies left by Craig Stutzmann and Mark Weber. WSU promoted various quality control coaches and graduate assistants on defense.

You don’t have all day to wait for this one to start, so let’s get to the good stuff.

Three Things to Watch

  1. Offensive play calling: Reports indicated Craig Stutzmann was doing the bulk of the play calling in recent weeks. In the past, Stutzmann, Offensive Coordinator Brian Smith and Nick Rolovich took a three-headed monster approach. With two of the three heads of that monster now gone, what will the offense look like? Smith is presumably now the sole coach calling plays. Heck, maybe Jayden de Laura will start calling his own plays. Whatever the case, WSU needs to keep doing whatever it’s been doing since the second half against Oregon State. Don’t waver from what’s working, as they say. Football sidelines are often a chaotic place by nature. Hopefully Dickert and WSU have things orchestrated properly.
  2. Running back production: If Deon McIntosh is still on crutches like he was toward the end of last weekend’s win over Stanford, then welcome to the Max Borghi Show. WSU has Nakia Watson and Jouvensly Bazil behind him on the depth chart, and whoever is directing the offense will need to decide how to deploy Borghi and his backups. Borghi played much better last week after some unimpressive outings. Let’s hope we get the Borghi we all know, love and expected—perhaps unfairly—this afternoon.
  3. The out-of-town scoreboard: Get this - If Oregon loses to UCLA, and Oregon State loses to Utah, WSU will be alone in first place in the Pac-12 North. What a time.

Be it resolved: The winner of today’s game gets ownership of the gocougs.com domain.

Links

WSU Football

‘The show must go on.’ On the heels of unfortunate week, new-look Washington State team still has a job to do | The Spokesman-Review
PULLMAN – Jake Dickert asked for a triple shot when he got his coffee Tuesday morning ahead of a 7 a.m. practice session. Understandably, he was up too late the night before. Everyone attached to the Washington State football program was.

Two-minute drill: Keys to victory for Washington State against BYU | The Spokesman-Review
Don’t take your eyes off …

The pick: Why Washington State will beat BYU | The Spokesman-Review
PULLMAN – There might not be another college football team better primed to handle an emotional, tumultuous week like this one.

Washington State football fills out coaching staff | The Spokesman-Review
PULLMAN – Washington State appears to have settled on a new-look football staff just four days after the Cougars lost half of their coaches.

Reports: Washington State to hire two assistants with run-and-shoot experience | The Spokesman-Review
By hiring a pair of assistants with extensive backgrounds teaching the run-and-shoot, Washington State will mitigate disorder within its offense.

‘I love Pullman. It fits me’: Washington State interim coach Jake Dickert paid his dues during steady climb up the coaching ladder | The Spokesman-Review
When Jake Dickert’s coaching career is finished, he imagines his days in retirement will be spent relaxing on a porch, soaking in the calming sights of a rural setting.

Cougar Football Announces Coaching Staff Updates - Washington State University Athletics
WSU will host BYU Saturday.

College Football

Breaking down the most likely College Football Playoff combinations
Which four-team combination is the most likely to play out in this season’s College Football Playoff?

College football games, Week 8: Pac-12 hopes hang by a thread, Oklahoma State a rare undefeated underdog - CBSSports.com
Oregon is again the Pac-12’s only hope, and it cannot afford another slip up

College football picks, schedule: Predictions against the spread, odds for top 25 games today in Week 8 - CBSSports.com
A closer look at the top games on the slate for Week 8 of the 2021 season

College football schedule, games 2021: What to watch in Week 8, TV channels, Saturday kickoff times - CBSSports.com
A key Big 12 matchup headlines the Week 8 games around college football

Basketball

5 questions entering the Pac-12 - College Hoops Today
Who is the sleeper? Washington State.

Women's Basketball Takes On Saint Martin's For a Sunday Exhibition - Washington State University Athletics
PULLMAN, Wash. – The Washington State women's basketball team unofficially kicks off the 2021-22 season this Sunday, Oct. 24, as the Cougars host Saint Martin's

$$$

Alger Family Gift Commitment Takes Cougar Athletics Past IPF Fundraising Goal - Washington State University Athletics
PULLMAN, Wash. – Washington State University alumnus Darren Alger and wife, Jamie, committed a transformational gift to the Indoor Practice Facility (IPF).