If college football played 57 minute games, the Washington State Cougars would be 4-0 right now. Unfortunately, games are 60 minutes long and, even more unfortunately, the officials did not forget that rule allowing Oregon to stage a comeback and pick up the 44-41 victory.
To some fans, it was a crushing loss. To other fans, it was disappointing, but encouraging. To the players and coaches in the locker room, however, it was nothing but a mere bump in the road.
“I still feel like we’re number one,” said defensive back Chau Smith-Wade after practice on Tuesday. “After this loss, nothing really changed about my point of view of this team. I feel like we’re number one regardless.”
The Cougs returned to the practice field on Tuesday to prepare for their week five game against Cal this weekend. After practice, some players met with the media and one reoccurring theme kept coming up: Confidence.
“It’s going to give us the edge, give us that hunger that we need early in the season so that we can finish those types of games,” said receiver Lincoln Victor.
“Overall, as a team we’re really confident in what we can do,” said EDGE Brennan Jackson. “The team has a lot of confidence right now. Whether that puts us in the top-25 or not, we don’t really look at that stuff. Right now we’re 3-1, but this week we’re going to try and go 1-0.”
Of course, it won’t be a cake walk this weekend inside Martin Stadium. The Cal Bears also enter the game 3-1, with their only loss coming during a thriller against Notre Dame in South Bend that came with its fair share of controversy. Especially after recent showdowns with the Bears, the Cougs know they’re in for a challenge against a good Cal team. They’ll be prepared, but at the end of the day WSU feels like as long as they play their game, the Cougs will come out on top.
“It doesn’t matter who stands in front of us, it’s all about the Cougs,” Victory told the media Tuesday. “We have everything in this facility to win and be a top-25 team or be the number one team in the nation. After these past four weeks I think we’ve shown the world what type of team we are. We’re not going to let one game define our season.”
“After a loss you want to show everyone that we’re not in that losing mindset,” said Smith-Wade. “We’re going to learn from that and we’re going to come out on top.”
The Cougs face Cal Saturday in their homecoming matchup from Pullman. Kickoff is set for 2:30 p.m. on the Pac-12 Network. When it comes to summarizing the team’s attitude heading into this one, Victor summed everything up into one simple thought.
“I can’t wait for Saturday to show the people what we can do again.”
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