Washington State Basketball: The Torch Has Been Passed


Feb 4 2012; Pullman, WA, USA; UCLA Bruins center Joshua Smith (34) fights for position with Washington State Cougars guard DaVonte Lacy (3) and forward D.J. Shelton (23) during the first half at the Beasley Performing Arts Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: James Snook-US PRESSWIRE

A new year in the “Post Klay Thompson” Era of Washington State Basketball, is upon us.  Last year saw Cougar fans with a hangover of Klay Thompsons career at the school and the year led to a run in the CBI.  Unfortunately Cougar fans were hoping for a different post season and the disappointment of coming short of that has us all in question of what this season will be.

Make no mistake, our Washington State Cougars have a lot of talent on the Court.  This year they have to mature a lot and put it all together on the court by the time they enter Pac12 play.  Today will be a pretty significant step in the maturation process for these Cougs.  In the all time series between the Cougars and the Eagles WSU has a lead of 54-11.  Last year the Cougars dominated the game vs Eastern Washington 75-49.  But this is a new year and today the Cougars need leaders to arise.  I really am hoping for DaVonte Lacy to step up this season and it starts with the Eagles.  I think if DaVonte can find himself early in the year, the Cougars could be the “Shocker” in the Pac12.

Another player who needs to step up in 2012 is D.J. Shelton.  D.J. has some major strides to make this year but I do think the potential is there.  Brock Motum can not be the Cougars only answer inside.  Obviously Brock has stepped into the leadership role but he is too easy to shut down if the Cougs have no threats other than him inside, Shelton can be that threat.  I know everyone thinks it so I’ll just point out the obvious, he reminds me of DeAngelo Casto but he has a long way to go but as most of you know, DeAngelo had to grow A LOT and hopefully D.J. will be able to make that kind of growth over this year.

There are a lot of bright spots for this Cougar team this year and I am really looking forward to seeing how this all plays out.  For now we’ll just have to watch tonight and see where the starting point is.  Go Cougs!