Since the day off on Monday, the Washington State offense has been simply lagging. You know, like when you play a video game online and it starts skipping frames and missing what you thought you were hitting. It’s been like that for the “O”.
It helps the defense a little bit that quarterback Connor Halliday has been taking it easy, sitting out sectors of practice to admittedly “rest his arm”, per coach’s orders. I don’t think there’s anything to worry about here, just that after 10 days in Lewiston Mike Leach is trying to keep his guys fresh. He’s already held out Bucannon a couple days and continued to have certain guys rotate out to limit their reps. Austin Apodaca has been productive in Halliday’s stead, with Tyler Bruggman taking good advantage of his reps as well.
Meanwhile the “D” has been taking advantage over these past two days, particularly the defensive line making the offensive line look pretty 2012. And even though “mama said there’d be days like this”, O-line coach Clay McGuire and the head man aren’t nearly so impressed with the first 10 days by their offensive hogs that they don’t have strong feelings for change in the unit, one way or another. In fact coach McGuire laid it out on Tuesday:
"I was not real impressed with today… we just looked sluggish out there and dragged around… We have a couple of guys fighting for jobs right now. It’s pushing those guys who supposedly have those jobs, harder."
He went on to say that Zach Brevick and Matt Goetz are hot on the heels of a couple guys on the line, despite a little bit of a size disadvantage, weight-wise. Also, it looks like Riley Sorensen, the late freshman addition to the 2013 class out of Santa Margarita, CA is impressing and receiving some reps with the 2’s. Finally for the O-line my prediction of only a single freshman having a slime chance at playing time seems to be somewhat accurate, except that Sorensen, not center Carlos Freeman, is that frosh at the moment. Freeman is not on the 2-deep charts at the moment, but neither is Sorensen officially.
Speaking of the OL 2-deeps, here’s what it looks like currently, with what sounds like both guard spots up for grabs:
- LT: Gunnar Ecklund, Devonte McClain
- LG: Joe Dahl, Eduardo Middleton
- C: Elliot Bosch, Zach Brevick (also consideration at either Guard spot)
- RG: John Fullington, Matt Goetz
- RT: Rico Forbes, Jacob Seydel
The rest of the interesting news over the past couple days is on the defensive side. Senior Anthony Carpenter has taken over with the 1’s at free safety, with Bucannon back on the other side. Carp made the transition back to safety this Fall, after spending a majority of the time in the Spring on the corner for depth purposes. Everything seems successful on the move back thus far, while Taylor Taliulu has moved back with the 2’s for the last couple of days.
Then yesterday, CB Damante Horton made a spectacular diving interception of Apodaca in the back of the endzone, only to land on his hip awkwardly and take some necessary medical attention. The injury wasn’t so bad that Horton (who is having an outstanding camp after being benched midway through 2012) couldn’t walk on his own, but it was still a scary moment with the depth on the corner being very slim. Coach Leach did throw in a spot of dry humor (as he is known to do with injuries to avoid talking about them) saying of Horton
"“He’s good. He’s bending horseshoes right now as we speak, so he’s doing great!”."
The event did give freshman Daquawn Brown a chance to showcase once again, knocking at least 3 passes down over the course of practice and making several sure-handed tackles as well. Brown is still battling with Horton and Nolan Washington for that starting position come the Auburn game.