Happy Thursday Cougs, and we hope your week is winding down nicely as we barrel towards the weekend. What miserable, wet weather in the pacific NW lately, jeesh. Meanwhile it was like 80 DEGREES in Chicago yesterday, what in the world!?
Anyway, some cool new shots of the Martin Stadium renovation, aka the Cougar Football Project, have been posted online. You can check out some progress here at their Facebook page, but you can really see some progress as Martin Stadium rises!
While far, far away from the finished product, the latest buzz is that stadium construction is progressing nicely as they are working around the clock to get it all done by the home opener. Per Moos, they will be going for the approval of the next phase of the stadium next month and hopefully that will work out as well. But construction is on target to be ready to go this fall for this phase, and of course we just can't wait to see how it all looks in September!
Meanwhile, did you hear that 'Ol Crimson made the trip to the CBI opener in San Francisco? Great to see the flag flying proudly, even at "off-Broadway" performances like the CBI. And how can you not love the San Fran Dons fans trying to "photobomb" the pic opportunity by popping the San Francisco T-shirts in the background??
Oh, and when we say "off-Broadway" in reference to the CBI, I think you know what we're getting at. You know, not exactly the big show? And maybe it should be referred to as "off-OFF-OFF-Broadway" in the CBI??
Sure, it's the third tourney in the pecking order, but hey, at least it's postseason hoops and a chance to keep going. And the TV exposure is always a good thing, even if it's relegated to networks like HDNet. And just wait until this coming Monday when the Cougs host Wyoming in Pullman, and wait until you turn on the TV and see a packed house!......that is, IF it was on TV.
Yes, the bummer is that Monday's game? NO TV. So WSU is paying $50k to host the game, and they won't even be on the tube? YUCK. Cougfan did the math and basically says that they need to sell 3,333 adult tickets to just break even. To that, I wish them good luck. But if I had to bet the over-under on even 3,000 fans on Monday night? I think I'd take the under and hide in the corner!
Continue on after, you know.....
Howie Stalwick had a good read on an interview with Bill Moos, which you can see here (and I believe you can listen to much of it as well at the podcasts page on iTunes, here?). Moos touches on a variety of topics, but one thing in particular that caught my eye was Moos and his position on football scheduling.
Moos definitely wants to keep the Pac-12 schedule at 9 conference games while others in the conference sound like they want to go with 8, ala the SEC, Big 10 and the ACC, while adding a fourth non-conference game for flexibility. And personally I'm mixed on the idea of 9 conference games, and here's why.
Let's face it, the Pac-12 is tough enough as a conference. USC is coming back to nightmare status, Oregon is a pain in the ass, Stanford is no picnic, Utah is tough, I mean I could go on and on. But why have the extra conference game to beat the crap out of each other while the other big conferences play the 8 games and call it good? Now that you have a conference championship game, you are essentially asking two Pac-12 teams to play TEN conference games. But doesn't that extra conference game not only provide an extra opportunity to lose, given the strong competitive balance we should be seeing in the conference going forward, but doesn't it also hurt the possibility of having more than one BCS bowl team?
I know the last two seasons we've been in a good spot there, as Stanford and Oregon have both been BCS bowl bid teams. But before these last two successful years, the last time the Pac-10/12 had two teams in BCS bowls in the same season was 2002, when SC and WSU were in the Orange and Rose Bowls respectively. From '03-'09, the Pac-10 played nine conference games per year and only produced the one BCS bowl team each season. It's a flippin' GRIND!
And then you hear Moos not only say that he wants to stick to 9 conference games, but also wants to see the team play an "A level" game against a Big 10 team?
I don't know, I guess I am of the belief that one fewer conference game - and one more game against a lower-level opponent - just increases the chances at overall conference success, as well as a bigger potential payday for the conference overall. And then when you look at the SEC, Big 10 and ACC, and see they all just play the eight conference games?? And the SEC has won the last SIX BCS championships, and even had both BCS champ participants last season from the SEC? Would both participants in the championship game been from the SEC if they had to play 9 conference games? Given how tough and brutal the SEC is on a weekly basis, playing one less conference game would sure seem as a benefit to the likes of Alabama and LSU!
That said, times are changing with the BCS. Maybe in a few years it won't even matter, and that the decks will be completely reshuffled? But if everyone else in the national "big boy" landscape is playing eight conference games, why not get in line and join the club?
Next up, anyone catch the super-terrific mega contract extension that MEGATRON signed yesterday with the Detroit Lions?? Upwards of $132 MILLION dollars, give or take a few million??
MEGATRON is ridiculous, and anyone who has watched a second of the NFL last year knows that the guy is pretty much unstoppable. Here's hoping our own transformer wideout, Marquess Wilson (aka OPTIMUS PRIME, as nicknamed by our own Huddy) is paying attention and ready to work his butt off this year. There'a a huge pot of gold waiting for big timers like OPTIMUS PRIME, so get after it Marquess Wilson!
Finally, WSU has released a quick video promoting the Crimson-n-Gray spring game.
Yeah, it's kinda cheesy. But it also fits in the self-promotion department that has changed under the direction of Bill Moos. Check it out:
And yes, you better BELIEVE we at WSU Football Blog will be at the spring game on 4/21! We will have the RV and drinks and eats out in the Joe Albi parking lot, so we hope to see many of you there.
All for now. GO COUGS!
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Mood is bullheaded on the Oregon game and the conference games. We're only hurting ourselves. I hope Leach figures it out quickly and helps to change his mind.
@kaddy Completely agree. The selling of a home conference game hopefully will come to an end sooner than Moos hopes.
@Upthewazzu What, you missed the HUGE announcement!?!? http://wsufootballblog.com/2012-articles/march/rise.html :) Yep, I'm back for good. Probably a couple of days a week most likely, but it's time to come back.
While the 8 game conference schedule would help out in a lot of ways, I'm not sure they could make it work and keep all the teams happy for scheduling. There is no way they would be able to guarantee the Cali schools all play each other every year and the NW schools a trip to LA every other year while playing an LA team every year. My guess is the NW schools will be the ones holding out for the 9 game schedule to keep relevance in LA for recruiting. Of course the Pac-12 network may make them soften a bit in a few years when all the LA people can watch those teams all the time.
I'm ready for the spring game, hopefully the weather cooperates by then. Looking forward to seeing all you guys over there again.
Yeah, I think this is why Moos wants the 9-game schedule, so that we maintain a presence in L.A. for recruiting.
And with Leach wanting to make L.A. a recruiting priority, it seems unlikely that he'd fight the 9-game schedule.
Re: Seattle Game- You do know that the team stays in a hotel before Pullman games too, right? Yes, there is travel, but the hotel room is part of the routine.
@weiss.ac True that Weiss. But I think Sutra's point was more to the fact that it is a 5 hour bus trip - at best - to play a so-called "home" game, where in Pullman they are 15 minutes away. And in years when we have the 4-5 breakdown of 4 conference home games, 5 conference away games, and one of your home games is played 5 hours away, well, it doesn't feel all that much like a home game to the team/players? Plus we've gone 1-3 vs BCS teams in Seattle since we started playing there in '02 (Colorado in '04, Okie State in '08, Oregon State last year, beating Baylor in '06). Personally I am all for a Seattle game, but I don't like it when we have just 3 Pullman home conference games. But as long as Moos sticks to playing an Oregon school in Seattle, this is going to be the reality.
This is a tough one. I get why Moos (and Floyd) want the Seattle game each year, to keep us 'relevant' in Seattle. And, the increased income from the game really helps us.
In fact, I was in agreement with them...... until I went to last year's game and watched OSU look very comfortable playing in Seattle. Home field advantage is huge in college football, especially for a team that's shooting for a 6-6 record like we were last year. So I'm definitely on Sutra's side on this now.
Personally, I am all for the 8 conference games, especially when you factor in the fact that we've been dropping a game in Pullman to play in Seattle. I mean, you take last year where we had the 4-5 home/away split and played OSU in Seattle. That effectively made it a 3-6 split when you figure that driving 5 hours across the mountains (each way) plus staying in a hotel is an away game for our kids. And this year? Well, given that we play two NC games on the road and play Oregon in Seattle, we're only playing 5 of 12 in Pullman this year as well.
So, by adding that extra NC game, we're more likely to able to add another home date against a mid-range or crappy foe, add another win, and overall better position ourselves for success in other parts of the season.
To think that we can compete for championships while playing 60% of our games outside of Pullman is crazy.