The betting odds haven't exactly been in Washington State's favor much in recent years, especially against notable opponents. For the first time in the Mike Leach era, however, it appears WSU will be favored in its season opener. WSU opened as the favorite against Rutgers and the Cougars continue to be favored, even as the betting line moves. The latest odds have WSU as an 8.5-point favorite against the Scarlet Knights.
The odds vary some depending on the sportsbook. Vegas Insider gives a rundown of all the movement. Caesars/Harrah's and a few others have the Cougars as a 9.5-point favorite it their latest odds while the Treasure Island sportsbook has WSU as an 8-point favorite. The consensus from Vegas Insider has WSU at 8.5-points following the Sunday update. That is down from 9.5-points earlier last week, but still a healthy margin.
Being favored against a quality has been rare. WSU was a 14-point underdog in the season opener against Auburn last year and a 13.5-point underdog to open the 2012 season against BYU. WSU has been favored against a BCS opponent just three times in the Leach era. WSU was a 1.5-point favorite against California and Utah last year. The Cougars won both games. WSU was a 20-point favorite against Colorado in 2012 ... we won't talk about that game.
The last time WSU was favored against a power conference opponent in Week 1? You have to go all the way back to 1998 when WSU opened the season as an 11.5-point favorite against Illinois. Here is a breakdown of WSU's season opening odds in the last 20 years.
|2014||vs. Rutgers||8.5-point favorite||???|
|2013||@ Auburn||14-point underdog||Auburn 31-24|
|2012||@ BYU||13.5-point underdog||BYU 30-6|
|2011||vs. Idaho State||29.5-point favorite||WSU 64-21|
|2010||@ Oklahoma State||17-point underdog||OSU 65-17|
|2009||vs. Stanford||17.5-point underdog||Stanford 39-13|
|2008||vs. Oklahoma State||7.5-point underdog||OSU 39-13|
|2007||@ Wisconsin||14.5-point underdog||Wisc 42-21|
|2006||@ Auburn||14-point underdog||Auburn 40-14|
|2005||vs. Idaho||29-point favorite||WSU 38-26|
|2004||@ New Mexico||2-point favorite||WSU 21-17|
|2003||vs. Idaho||26.5-point favorite||WSU 25-0|
|2002||vs. Nevada||26.5-point favorite||WSU 31-7|
|2001||@ Idaho||8-point favorite||WSU 36-7|
|2000||vs. Stanford||3-point underdog||Stanford 24-10|
|1999||vs. Utah||3-point favorite||Utah 27-7|
|1998||vs. Illinois||11.5-point favorite||WSU 20-13|
|1997||vs. UCLA||1-point favorite||WSU 37-34|
|1996||@ Colorado||20-point underdog||Colorado 37-19|
|1995||@ Pittsburgh||3-point favorite||Pittsburgh 17-13|
A game-by-game look at USC's 2014 football schedule - LA Times
Coach Mike Leach guided the Cougars to an upset over the Trojans last season at the Coliseum. The Trojans can expect a chilly reception in Pullman in November.
Marquess Wilson must make huge strides for the Chicago Bears
So, when second-year wide receiver Marquess Wilson, who many consider the heir-apparent to Earl Bennett as the team's No. 3 option, illegally motioned and then proceeded to wander through a play confused in the middle of the period, it certainly caught people's attention.
Cougars confident heading into camp - Spokesman.com - Aug. 3, 2014
Aesthetically speaking, the setting was all that separated the first practice of Washington State’s 2014 football season from all those that preceded it under coach Mike Leach, and all that will follow. The Cougars returned to the two natural-grass fields of Lewiston’s Sacajawea Middle School to run nearly all the same drills in the same manner that they ran last spring, that they will run throughout the upcoming season and will run to prepare for a bowl game, should they return to the postseason as well.
A spirited second day of WSU fall camp - SportsLink - Spokesman.com - Aug. 3, 2014
Day two in Lewiston is in the books and it was a pretty fun practice. The team session was about as close as any I've seen in all my months covering the Cougars and everybody seemed to be in a pretty good mood afterwards.
Cougar Football Continues Fall Practice - Washington State University Official Athletic Site
Washington State football continued fall practice with a two-hour workout in helmets and shorts at Sacajawea Middle School Sunday afternoon.