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Is it college football preview season already?

Yes. Yes it is!

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: DEC 19 Washington State at Utah Photo by Boyd Ivey/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Good morning. The hope for today was a post that would focus on WSU Baseball’s Saturday win, and a chance to take a road series from the USC Trojans. Welp. Instead, we’ll talk about future possibilities in lieu of present-day disappointment. Today, that will be in the form of the first in-depth 2021 Washington State Cougars preview that we’ve seen.

College football preview season often takes me back to simpler times when, as soon as the calendar turned to June, I’d stock the local grocery stores in search of the Pac-10 magazines. First was Athlon, then Lindy’s, followed by Sporting News, Phil Steele, and finally Street and Smith’s. After that came gifts from the postman, who would deliver the Athlon/Lindy’s Big Ten and SEC previews. This was all totally normal, why do you ask?

While we don’t get that drastic any more, there is still a wealth of preview information out there, and much more will trickle out as we get closer to the season. Here now, your first big Cougar preview, courtesy of College Football News. We won’t spoil all of it, but instead will give a couple thoughts on each segment of the five-page preview. Bleacher Report has nothing on this outfit.

The line should do its part to make it all go with four starters expected back around the great tackle combination of Abraham Lucas and Liam Ryan.

Let’s just say I’m taking a “wait and see” stance with one of the two tackles. That’s about the nicest way I can put it.

There was a decent pass rush and the run D wasn’t bad, but the pass defense was a rumor allowing 307 yards per game.

“Pass defense was a rumor” is a great way to put it, and that’s been the case for a while now. WSU has clearly upgraded at cornerback when compared to the recent past, but the Cougs really need to figure out the safety position, or 2021 could see more of the same in regards to explosive plays. In fairness, WSU did a better job at minimizing explosives in the pretend 2020 campaign.

Abe Lucas is listed atop the best five offensive players ranking, and I will not argue with that. A quick scan of the top players on offense makes me think that the Cougs really need to make hay this season, as every player will likely depart after 2021.

The defense is similar, with only Brennan Jackson not in the senior class. When all is said and done, I won’t be surprised if Jackson ends up being the most impactful defender this season. As for the others on the list, I’ll put Daniel Isom in the same “wait and see” category that I mentioned earlier. There were far too many instances in 2020 when he looked lost in the secondary.

Washington State Cougars Key Game To The 2021 Season

at Cal, Oct. 2

This has the potential to be one of those pivot moments every team has to deal with at some point. The Cougars should be good enough to beat Utah State and Portland State to open the season, but USC and Utah to open the Pac-12 campaign is rough. But both of those teams are from the South.

Cal as the key game? Well, it was a fun preview while it lasted.

Instead of a key game, I’ll highlight a key stretch, and it falls right in the middle-third of the season. The run of these four: At California Golden Bears, then three straight home games against the Oregon State Beavers, Stanford Cardinal and BYU Cougars will make or break this season. If the Cougars go 3-1, a bowl game is a near certainty. Anything less and we’ll be white-knuckling it down the stretch.

SET THE WASHINGTON STATE COUGARS REGULAR SEASON WIN TOTAL AT … 6

Everyone is loaded with veterans in this year of the super-season, but for a team like Washington State that relies so much on precision with its offensive style – that still applies under Rolovich – having a full offseason with an attack that gets back almost everyone should mean the world.

That win total sounds right on the money. I’ll set the floor at three wins, and the ceiling at eight. As usual, the quarterback will likely make much of the difference.

Football

Washington State Cougars: CFN College Football Preview 2021
College Football News Preview 2021: Previewing, predicting, and looking ahead to the Washington State season with what you need to know.

Six reasons why 2022 could be a banner year for Washington State at the NFL draft | The Spokesman-Review
If three WSU players are drafted, it would match the most in a single year since 2005.

Baseball

In almost no time at all, this season went from a legitimate tournament chance to drain encirclement.

WSU Puts Tying Run On in Ninth But Falls to USC - Washington State University Athletics
Washington State put the tying run on base in the ninth inning but the USC bullpen held on and the Cougar dropped a 3-2 decision at Dedeaux Field Saturday afternoon.

This Week in Parenting

Here’s a look at this week’s forecast for Team Kendall’s local area:

Let’s go live to Mrs. Kendall for her reaction:


Those weather conditions have been the norm since early March, with precious little deviation. It means that the kids haven’t been outside nearly as much as they should be, and multiple baseball sessions have been canceled. Couple that with Germany’s lengthy COVID-induced restrictions, and this season they comically call “spring” has been a time that has tried a mom’s soul.

This week also brought the onset of standardized testing in school, with the nine year-old going first unto the breech. His teachers all sent out pointers for the day of the test, such as the importance of a good night’s sleep and healthy breakfast. You can tell how much times have changed, as the nuns of Assumption school told us the best test prep was a pot of coffee and a few lung darts. We may have been in the fourth grade at the time, but damned if those nuns weren’t on to something.

My only guidance to the kiddo was to take his time, and not to think he had to be the first one to finish. I don’t know if it’s a common thing, but that has always been an issue with both of my kids. It’s taken a lot of effort to break them of the “If I’m done first, I probably did the best” theory. Happy to report that he claims to not have been the first to finish. I’ll call that progress.

Book Club

Finished Jerry Seinfeld’s anthology of his comedy bits a couple weeks ago, and now it’s on to The Quiet Americans, a history of the early beginnings of American foreign intelligence. It centers on four different men who began the careers during and shortly after World War II, and were at the forefront of intelligence-gathering operations at the Cold War’s onset. I’m about 180 pages in, and it is really, really good so far. Like, “ok, maybe just a few more pages and I’ll finally put it down for the night” good.

Borussia Dortmund Life-long fan update!

BVB IS DFB POKAL CHAMPION! THEY WON A TROPHY! I DID NOT KNOW ONE OF MY TEAMS WAS ALLOWED TO DO THAT!

Borussia Dortmund teach RB Leipzig′s Nagelsmann a lesson in German Cup triumph | Sports| German football and major international sports news | DW | 14.05.2021
RB Leipzig's Julian Nagelsmann had hoped to end his tenure with a triumph ahead of his summer move to Bayern Munich. Instead, his team was dismantled by a hungrier, more ruthless Dortmund.

The writing style in that article was quite entertaining, as it is a departure from what I’m used to in terms of recap articles.

In an even more amazing turn of events, die Schwarzgelben can clinch a spot in the Champions League with a win on Sunday. This was all but a pipe dream about a month ago, as BVB was languishing well behind the top four in the standings, and needed several things to fall into place. Well, here we are. Fifth-place Frankfurt lost to the worst team in the league on Saturday (a team whose goal differential was -61 entering the game!!!), opening the door for a “win and in” scenario for BVB. Let’s go black and yellow! Hopefully you all are sobered up by game time!

Non-Sports

Why Does the Myth of the Confederate Lost Cause Persist? - The Atlantic
For some Americans, history isn’t the story of what actually happened; it’s the story they want to believe.