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Cougs stretch the field during first spring scrimmage

Lots of offense on Saturday

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Ashley Davis

Good morning. In light of the wintry weather that befell Pullman, your Washington State Cougars took to the perennially-embarrassing-for-a-major-college-football-team indoor air-supported structure on Saturday to conduct their first official spring scrimmage of 2023. As expected, there’s still lots of competition! In addition to that, the Cougar offense emphasized the vertical passing game, which new offensive coordinator Ben Arbuckle specializes in more so than Eric Morris.

According to Colton Clark’s recap, WSU’s top two quarterbacks, Cam Ward and John Mateer, completed four passes of 50+ yards, as part of a passing fusillade that saw multiple new faces making catches throughout the session. Among the names with which we need get familiar are tight ends Cooper “Beaver” Mathers and Cameron Johnson, along with receivers DT Sheffield, Carlos Hernandez, Josh Kelly and Kyle Williams. There are a couple guys returning from last season who were still in the mix on Saturday, including Lincoln Victor (hopefully he gets more targets next season!) and Orion Peters.

Clark’s unofficial tally had WSU’s top two quarterbacks completing 28 of 40 passes for (gasp) 470 yards. Sheesh! How that shakes out once the proverbial bullets start flying obviously remains to be seen. I know we all got sick and tired of screen upon screen in 2022, but I believe much of the overly-horizontal passing game was a function of the offensive line’s ineptitude.

The running game didn’t go entirely ignored, as Jaylen Jenkins averaged north of 10 yards on seven carries (most of which came on a 56-yarder), while veteran Nakia Watson only got a few plays. Along those same lines, it seems pretty clear that Jake Dickert is definitely taking a “I know what I have” tack with some guys, as Brennan Jackson and Ron Stone both watched from the sideline in an attempt to get younger players more reps. Dickert also made it clear that players at multiple positions need to step forward.

“Today was very scripted,” Dickert said. “We knew exactly how many reps everybody was going to get and against what groups. Linebacker will be big. Those guys gotta start sorting themselves out. That nickel position needs to start sorting itself out. Who are going to be the best five offensive linemen? That’ll go all the way to game week. There’s a lot of things we’re going to learn from this tape. We’ll see some guys start to separate.”

I know Dickert is trying to light a fire under those position groups, but if we get to game week and the offensive line still isn’t sorted out, we will have a big, big problem on our hands.

On the defensive side, Jackson and Stone’s absence didn’t portend an absence of pass rush, as several Cougs logged sacks on the afternoon, including Edges Quinn Roff, Raam Stevenson, Lawrence Falatea and Andrew Edson. There’s no question that WSU will be able to rotate fresh bodies at the end positions this fall, but there is still a need to establish a rotation for the interior guys, who need to stay fresh in order to remain effective.

We now sit just three weeks from the spring game, and hopefully the weather cooperates in the interim! The Cougs will sit for a couple days of rest before they resume spring drills on Tuesday.

Until then, let’s see what a few of the participants thought of the scrimmage.


After defeating the UCLA Bruins on Friday to end a really terrible stretch of play, the Cougar baseball team was hoping to clinch a series win on Saturday. But as we mentioned, “springtime” in Pullman had other ideas.

The good news for UCLA is that situations like this will never occur once they move to the Big Ten, which will see travel to tropical destinations such as Minneapolis, Columbus and State College.

No word yet on when Saturday’s postponement will be made up, but Sunday’s first pitch is scheduled for 12:05 p.m., carried live on Pac-12 Networks.

This Week in Pet Ownership

Welp, it was only a matter of time. After holding out for nearly a decade, to include the time I told the boys that it was illegal to own a dog in Hillsborough County (Tampa), I finally caved. So, without further ado, please welcome Buda the Goldendoodle.

In keeping with the European theme, Buda is named for the portion of the Hungarian city that sits on the west side of the Danube.

As for the other Euro-themed pet in the house, let’s just say that Comino the cat is taking a “wait and see” approach to the new mammal. To her credit, she did at least approach the little guy to see what all the fuss was about.

Needless to say, yours truly has now fallen from #3 in the Kendall house’s male power rankings to #4. Wholly unsurprising.

A Thread Worth Your Time

This country is the best, but somehow the worst. It’s something, anyway. I encourage you to read the entire thread. This is a tragedy that is unfolding in real time, largely because of our penchant for guns, drugs, and other overly risky behavior.


This first story is all kinds of hilarious, for too many reasons to discuss.

How Disney stripped power from Florida Gov. DeSantis’ special district board
Disney special district predecessors passed agreements giving theme park giant maximum developmental power.

What does an AR-15 do to a human body? A visual examination of the deadly damage. - Washington Post
This is how bullets from an AR-15 blow the body apart.

Ukraine’s army must shed its Soviet legacy, says a military expert | The Economist
Its senior officers must not stifle junior initiative, warns Franz-Stefan Gady | By Invitation