Monday, August 10, 2009

Marshall's Knee the Key to Day One

Finally. It's on. And not a moment too soon. I think we're all about "previewed out", wouldn't you say? I mean there is only so many ways you can look at the upcoming season before it all just kind of runs together. So enough of all that. It's time for the real thing. And now with cool new practice jerseys, including the Nike swoosh!

I'm sure by now you have heard all you need to hear about day one, and while there are a lot of stories and such, Vince's blowout recap from yesterday is the place to be. He also weighed in this AM as well with even more links and so on. Safe to say Vince has come out swinging in round one!

The toughness theme is there, and that's great. And really, is there any doubt that getting bigger/stronger/tougher is a theme that they are pushing for this year? When we saw them in practice a little bit this spring, and again after spring ball was over and Vince recapped the whole session, they did appear to be overall a tougher, crisper unit compared to the ragged '08 season. Even with some of the injuries and missing faces from the spring, they just looked, I don't know, different.

But it's not just for this year. As long as coach Wulff is at WSU, what we are going to see beginning now and into the future is a group that will pride itself on being a physical football team. It has been drilled into them since Wulff took over, the new approach to conditioning and nutrition and all that. It's not just lip service. It will be this program's identity, and it will happen sooner rather than later.

But of all the talk and excitement from day one, the early word I'm hanging my hopes on right now? Marshall Lobbestael and Jeshua Anderson.

Marshall was mentioned in Vince's post about the knee feeling good:

Lobbestael is coming off knee surgery, though he said it’s fine. “Feels good,” he said. “Got a new brace and it feels good. I was running, doing drops and stuff. I’ve just got to get used to doing everything. In spring I was sort of held out some drills, some running plays, but it feels good.”

Lobbestael would throw the day's only TD in skeleton drills. Big whoop right? Hey, We'll take WHATEVER WE CAN GET right now!

And the fact that Jeshua is out there practicing is very good news indeed. Even if it wasn't 100% clear that he would even return to the team until mid-July (did you know that?? It's not a surprise, but waiting until mid-July before deciding certainly is.). The team is, let's face it, lacking in play-makers at the WR position, and all things being equal, Jeshua is the biggest homerun guy in the lineup. Want to stretch the field and keep things honest? You better have a healthy, productive Jeshua out there to give the opposition a little something to think about. Even though we all expect the running game to be deep and all that, still, you better be able to get some things done through the air or else it could be another rough season with the football.

That's it for now. Look for some first-hand impressions from our own Longball in the coming days, as our Pullman "townie" should have some good looks at the team. Enjoy your day, and GO COUGS!


Stiffmiester said...

I was very happy to hear that Lobster was feeling it. The Grippmiester talked about Lopina showing more accuracy but still no TD's in skelly drills? Please don't put Lopina in as our starter. Wulff has said the QB battle is wide open. He even has hinted that Tuel could get a look. I want to see what this kid has but let's redshirt him. All is right and foozeball is back.

Sean Hawkins said...

I hear ya Stiff. And don't sweat day one of skelly drills. They will get better and better as they get back to the routine of practice, etc.

And agreed, no Tuel this year. PRESERVE THAT REDSHIRT! Keep him on ice for a year, let him practice and learn how to be a college student and football player and weight-room guy, and then let him compete for the job next year. I know some true frosh play every year, but I really don't want him in the mix!

Chris '04 said...

Redshirting Freshman should be a damned requirement. It sure as hell would be if I was running the ship. Who knows what type of situation your team will be in in 4-5 years. Just look at what OSU has been able to do with all the 4th and 5th year seniors on their defense. I hope Long sits on the bench this year. We might need his services during our 3rd consecutive Rose Bowl run in '13.

The Coug-A-Sutra said...

I actually found myself enjoying the presence of Ball as much as anything else...

Its nice to hear lines like "we're starting to get back to the way we looked in the early 2000's." Its gotta make a difference to have guys on both sides of the ball (levy and ball) who were there the last time someone other than SC won the Pac-10.

Its also nice to hear that guys appear in shape..we'll know though by Thursday when the soreness should REALLY be nearing its peak..

Nuss said...

"Its nice to hear lines like 'we're starting to get back to the way we looked in the early 2000's.' Its gotta make a difference to have guys on both sides of the ball (levy and ball) who were there the last time someone other than SC won the Pac-10."

Amen ... or however it is you Hindu guys finish your prayers.

Sean Hawkins said...

Sutra, no doubt. I am worried about the d-line depth though. The best defenses we ever had in the modern age had that excellent talent up front. I wish we could put 'em in a bubble until game days but we know that won't work. Just a couple of injuries and it could be real trouble. FINGERS CROSSED (as always!). But I would bet Long WILL see action, like it or not. I guess he'll have to settle for a couple of Rose Bowl rings...

The Coug-A-Sutra said...


I include and encompass all theological doctrines as a part of my spirituality and teachings--a method and way of being that I refer to simply as "Cougintology."

That said, you should always feel free to bring "amen" or better yet "ramen" to the table whenever you like.

Thank you, Nuss.

Brian C. Setzler said...

I just bought tickets to the Stanford game. I can't wait for the season to start!

'03CouveCoug said...

I can’t tell you how refreshing it is to hear about toughness! I truly believe that improvement in physical toughness and more importantly mental toughness will be what allows the Cougs to make giant strides (that and the continuity that comes with a relatively injury-free season). An attitude of doing whatever it takes to be tougher than your opponent (especially when faced with a deficit in talent and depth) can really change the mentality quickly.

I love the idea of developing that "chip" on the team's proverbial shoulder right away. My favorite thing about being a Coug is always being an underdog...especially when we become the "Little Engine that Could."

I don’t know why, but I’m getting more and more optimistic about this team the more I read, see and hear about it! It’s August, alright!

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