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Looking at the 2016 Cougs with WSU Football Blog

Let’s check in with one of the godfathers of the WSU blogosphere.

NCAA Football: Washington State at Arizona Casey Sapio-USA TODAY Sports

Unlike some other schools, WSU fans aren’t blessed with a plethora of internet voices. I can assure you that managing and maintaining a site while also trying to do justice to your day job is no easy task, which means that most sites dedicated to WSU athletics understandably come and go.

When CougCenter launched nearly eight years ago, WSU Football Blog was one of those voices. And though Real Life has conspired to greatly reduce the frequency of posting by its contributors, the fellas over there still occasionally find time to post thoughtful, smart, irreverent content that’s definitely worth reading.

So it was to my delight that I saw my buddy Coug-A-Sutra (not his real name, silly) posting a couple of deep dives into the upcoming season over the last couple of weeks. With pretty much everyone outside of WSU picking WSU fourth in the North and viewing the Cougars as a not-all-that-serious contender — and certainly behind Stanford, Oregon and UW — it’s great to get a Coug perspective on the team.

The first post was a look at how many games WSU should win in 2016. There’s a prevailing line of thinking out there that the Cougs played above their heads in getting to nine wins last season (particularly among the laptops), and that even though a ton of talent returns, getting to nine wins again is a tall order. So Sutra asked this question:

As I thought about how I should best go about trying to formulate an honest answer, I found myself pondering two important sub-questions. The first was "Does the 2016 WSU football team–at least on paper–figure to be better than the one it fielded in 2015?" The second was "Should we expect WSU’s opponents to be better than the opposition we faced in 2015?"

He goes through some fairly simply analysis to try and answer these two questions (and, for what it’s worth, the longer I do this kind of stuff the more I believe that simple is often better), and I won’t spoil the result. Go read it.

The second post was a look at whether the Cougs really are correctly cast as the outsiders in the Pac-12 North race, using the tried-and-true method of home/away schedule analysis that’s been a staple of prognosticators for years, but seems to have been largely ignored in the context of the Pac-12 North next season. Again, I won’t spoil it, but it’s good news for the Cougs.

Both are worth your time.

BREAKING: Klay Thompson probably will get fewer shots for GSW, totally won't care

Klay on Durant: 'Gives me chills to think of possibilities' | CSN Bay Area
"The most exciting thing to the potential explosiveness we will have on the offensive end. We got one of the best scorers to ever play in this league joining already one of the most potent offensives of all me chills to think of the possibilities!!" Thompson told CSN Bay Area's Ros Gold-Onwude on Monday.