Washington State hasn’t belted out the fight song after a game since way back on Sept. 23 when they beat Oregon State at home. Since then, it’s been five straight losses and suddenly our Cougs are 4-5 and need to win two of their last three games to be bowl eligible.
That starts today in Berkeley, and assuming an Apple Cup win is out of the question, the Cougs will need to win today and next Friday at home against Colorado to make a lower-tier bowl.
Against Cal, the Coug are up against a team with an outstanding running back in Jaydn Ott, who’s gone for 847 yards in eight games this season and is averaging 5.8 yards per carry. Stop him, and the WSU defense will only have to deal with Cal freshman quarterback Fernando Mendoza and a slew of tall wide receivers. The good news is Chau Smith-Wade should be back, bolstering the WSU secondary.
The WSU defense stepped up last week, only allowing 10 points, but the offense couldn’t hold up its end of the bargain against a bad Stanford team. WSU faces another poor defensive team in Cal, as the Bears rank 116 in total defense and 127 in passing defense, per cfbstats.com.
Facing a bad defense obviously didn’t equal a better offensive output last week, and let’s presume Cal will drop seven or eight in coverage as most teams are inclined to do against WSU’s one dimensional offense (WSU gained only 46 yards on the ground last week).
We all know about how goofy games against Cal can get. Watch it at 1 p.m. PST on ESPN2 and talk about it here.