Editors Note: This series is a collection of college football preseason questions and answers from me to our writers. The goal is to get one Cougar question and one Pac-12 question answered per day by multiple members of our team, and each day we plan to build onto the list until we hit the season on Sept. 29! Let’s get it!
Q: What are the 3 Most Winnable Pac-12 Games for WSU?
Q: Which Pac-12 Teams will end of the regular season in the top 25?
1. Eastern Washington, UNLV, Colorado
2. USC- Probably the favorites to win the 2012 National Championship, this team is stacked with talent. With the return of Heisman Candidate Matt Barkley gives the Trojans a chance in almost every game. Trojans might even get Penn State’s star running back Silas Redd which would increase their championship chances even more. A couple of tough road games at Stanford and Washington, but USC should be able to mange a strong year.
1. I’d have to say UCLA, Colorado, Oregon State.
2. Oregon, USC, and if there’s a wildcard team I’d have to go with either UW or Cal. I really think Cal will surprise some teams this year.
1. I’m going with Colorado, Oregon State and Arizona State.
2. USC – The Trojans are loaded everywhere. They are not just leading the conference race, but possibly the national race too.
Oregon – The Ducks will be back and high flying again, but I’m not sure Bennett will be able to lead them to the promise land. DeAnthony Thomas and Kenjon Barner could though.
Cal – Tough to sleep on the Cardinal, but the Big Game is in newly revitalized memorial and I think Cal barely has the edge at qb for the season. Tedford better make it to 8 wins this year.
Q: What do you Most like about Coach Mike Leach so far?
Q: Pac-12 Coach most likely to be fired after the season?Evan’s Answers:1. What I like about Coach Leach so far is his style of recruiting. Leach is expanding the recruiting scenario from just Washington and California to Arizona and Texas. 3 players from Texas have already given a verbal commitment to Wazzu and expect more to join. The biggest surprise has to be the pick up of 4 star quarterback Tyler Bruggman. Given Leach’s past success has made Washington State a school that’s determined for success and many recruits are starting to buy into it.
2. PAC-12 coach that will most likely be fired after this season would be Jeff Tedford from California. Tedford has been with Cal for 10 years and has turned the program around, but the past three seasons have been a struggle for Cal. From 2009-2011 Tedford’s won 52% of his games and 44% in conference play. It might be time for Cal to start fresh and go with somebody new. Coach Tedford is for sure on the hot seat this season and will need at least a bowl appearance or bowl win to secure his spot in Berkeley.
1. Mike Leach brings an attitude and a swagger to Coug-Country that hasn’t been seen since the Mike Price days. But honestly, it’s more than about the family atmosphere for me, it’s about the pride in being great that he has and will continue to instill in his team. It’s about the details and the work ethic. He comes in here talking about Marquess Wilson like he hasn’t done anything yet, and then goes and demands more out of him by basically benching him (by lowering him for a few days on the depth chart) for not performing in practice. We’re talking about arguably the Pac-12’s best receiver last season and Leach is saying “show me more and show it to me every day”! Coach doesn’t accept less than great and he is a proven master at bringing that out of people. Case and point: Spring game, Wilson goes off with an eye catching performance.
2. Mike Riley is my top candidate for a firing this season, only because I feel Cal has the defense and enough offense to get back to a bowl with ease for Tedford. The Beavs, in my opinion, are not a winning team in this conference for at least a couple years. Riley’s saving grace is his ridiculously long contract and presumably big buyout, but let’s face it, you still have to perform on the field. OSU is looking into even more stadium upgrades in the near future which means now, more than ever, they need the support of their boosters and fans. That’s not going to get any better if the Beavs continue to throw out mediocre talent and woeful seasons. The loss to WSU 2 season’s ago was the first time I think Beaver fans took a step off of the Riley bus and said “uh-oh, I don’t like where this is headed”. They do have a few top tier athletes, but they are the last team to get a verbal commit in the Pac this year and I really think it’s a sign that recruits aren’t buying the program. Trouble in Beav-Nation.