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Cougar Women’s basketball awaits its postseason fate

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One day til the selection!

NCAA Basketball: Washington at Washington State James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning. The waiting, as one famous singer/songwriter once crooned, is indeed the hardest part. In this case, the waiting is taking place inside the spaces that house the Washington State Cougars women’s basketball team. It’s one thing for a team sitting squarely on the bubble to endure Selection Sunday, but the Cougar women have to wait all the way until Monday. This was news to me, so I’m glad I checked!

So, where do the Cougs stand heading into the final days? We know that there isn’t really anything they can do to help their cause, but according to Cougfan’s Jamey Vinnick (who has followed this about 1,000 times more closely than I have), our rooting interest on Sunday should be for Stephen F. Austin and Florida Gulf Coast, both of whom are their respective conference tournament favorites.

There are a few bracket forecasts out there, but the two that appear the most credible (meaning one is ESPN and the other doesn’t look its code was written in the 1995 version of Pascal) both have our Cougs in the Dance. As of 2 a.m. EST, ESPN’s Charlie Creme (really wish he’d give us a phonetic spelling of that name) currently has WSU teetering on the brink, as one of the “Last Four In.” The Mississippi State Bulldogs are the latest team to have its bubble burst after the Missouri Valley Conference and its top seed opted out of the conference tournament. Interesting.

WSU’s matchup hasn’t changed since Kevin’s update on Saturday, as the 10th-seeded Cougs are forecast to face the Texas Longhorns. The case is the same over at College Sports Madness, which also has WSU seeded 10th and facing UT. Either way, let’s hope that WSU’s name and logo show up on the screen when the first “region” is announced in order to save Cougar fans unnecessary stress. I write “region” because all of the games are taking place in San Antonio. Trivia - the men’s tournament is taking place completely in the city where Mrs. Kendall grew up, and the women’s tournament is taking place in the city where Mrs. Kendall met the man of her dreams. She also met me there.

As of Saturday’s games, the Cougars sit at 45th in the NET rankings, one spot behind aforementioned Mississippi State. They’re also two spots ahead of Drake, who faces Bradley today in the Missouri Valley conference title game, so Cougar fans should also be cheering on Drake since Bradley has no chance at an at-large bid (currently 79th). The selection show will take place on Monday at 4 p.m. PDT. Good luck, Cougs!

Over on the volleyball court, the 9-2 Cougars shouldn’t be sitting on any bubbles come tournament time, but they do have a tough row to hoe over the next few weeks, as they’ll face two of the Pac-12’s top teams. After their match with the Oregon State Beavers on Sunday, they face the 12-3 Washington Huskies twice, and the 10-3 Utah Utes twice. The final three of those four matches are on the road. If the Cougs get through those four tilts 2-2, I’ll consider that a success. The aforementioned match against the Beavers starts at noon PDT.

Football

Pac-12 Football: Spring 2021 Power Rankings and Storylines to Watch
How big of a leap will the Cougars make in coach Nick Rolovich’s second year?

John Blanchette: Washington State hopes Gesa partnership leads to more financial unions down the road as budget deficit builds | The Spokesman-Review
Chun has done some leveraging of his own with WSU’s football success pre-COVID with some record fundraising, and breaking through with a naming rights deal after a yearlong slog merits a toast.

This Week in Parenting

Well, it finally happened. Team Kendall expanded by one this week, as Mrs. Kendall surprised the boys with their very own pet.

Welcome, Comino the cat (who definitely DOES NOT look terrified in that photo). You didn’t ask, but I’ll tell you anyway - We were trying to think of a name and I thought we should name her after a place we’ve been in Europe. All of my suggestions were rejected, and Mrs. Kendall asked about where we’d gone in Malta (our last vacation before everything closed off again last fall). On our last day, we took a boat tour around the Maltese island of Comino, where we snorkled in the Blue Lagoon. It didn’t sound too terrible, so Comino it is.

Notice that I didn’t refer to the cat as one of my “children.” That’s because she’s a cat, and not a human. But I digress.

Book Club

Many books have been written about Theodore “Teddy” Roosevelt. Edmund Morris’ The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt is one of the better presidential biographies you’ll ever read, though much of the book focuses on his pre-presidency life. However, the greatest book you will ever read about our 26th U.S. President is Candice Millard’s The River of Doubt. The entire book is gripping to read, especially the detail Millard goes into about the harshness of the journey. I never knew how close Roosevelt came to dying in the jungles of South America, but hoo boy did it get bad! You will not regret opening this one up.

Non-Sports

Why Special Ops Is the New National-Security Catchall - The Atlantic
America’s elite forces have solved a lot of national-security problems. But the country’s reliance on them is becoming a problem of its own.