If most Texas Tech fans had their way, Mike Leach would still be coaching football for the Red Raiders. But, Leach has only had a 9-16 record in 2 years at Washington State.
Mike Leach is one of the great Offensive coaches in the nation, and the Washington State coaches, players, and fans have this year circled as their year.
Mike Leach still does not care about defense, but his offense could be scary good this season.
They have a couple of winnable games and then they host Oregon. Utah and California are both very winnable and then they visit Stanford, which won’t be an easy task for anyone.
The Pac 12 is a tough conference this year and will be for the next few years and the Washington State Cougars could be part of the resurgence.
We’ve been watching Leach’s offenses for a long time and this team looks like one of his better teams, possibly.
Connor Halliday returns for his senior year. His junior year was pretty incredible with him throwing for 4,597 yards and 34 TDs. Problem is, Halliday threw 22 INTs as well. He seemed to want to continue with the interception traditionn in the spring game, throwing several.
Washington State has a lot of talent returning at WR. Gabe Marks, Dom Williams, River Cracraft and Vince Mayle should be the main guys and they will all have monster years more than likely.Vince Mayle could be the next big thing and have an All American type season.
Washington State, like most schools in the Pac 12 right now, is improving their facilities. They are adding seats at Martin Stadium in Pullman, Washington among other things.
Most of the schools in the Pac 12 have improved or are improving their facilities and have improved their coaching staffs and are improving the talent on their respective teams.
As I already mentioned, Mike Leach would still be in Lubbock coaching Texas Tech if Red Raider fans had their way. But, he loves Washington State and loves his staff there. I am not sure I believe that Leach can build a perennial champion not placing emphasis on defense but he can have the occasional great year and the other potential champions of the Pac 12 had better take precaution of the occasional upset. His offenses are hard to stop on a regular basis and once it gets rolling it can be devastating.
Defense was a pretty constant problem for Leach in Lubbock. Leach loved to go for it on 4th and 20 on his own 20 yard line which is something kids love to do while playing Play Station John Madden games. But, it sure puts a defense in a bind in a real life football game.
The Cougars did have some talent on defense last season with guys like Deone Bucannon. Bucannon was a 1st round pick by the Arizona Cardinals in the 2014 NFL Draft and he was their top tackler in 2013.
They do return some talent and some speed.
Xavier Cooper is pretty tough up front and had 5 sacks a year ago. Darryl Monroe is back at LB and is pretty talented and the team’s third leading tackler in 2013.
Don’t look for Washington State to win the Pac 12 in 2014. But, if you find them on your schedule the healthy thing will be to take them seriously. These guys will score a bunch of points early and often. The best way to beat a Leach team is to pound the ball on the ground and control the clock. Don’t get into a shootout with a team that can shoot at least as well as you can.