Washington State’s long snapper depth is apparently far short of “OK”, as Mike Leach and his staff have decided to open up tryouts for a walk-on spot.
"The University is 24,000 people, 12,000 males approximately. There are X number of football players and of those football players somebody can long snap. I promise you there’s at least 20 people on this campus that can long snap."
Special Teams Coach Eric Russell:
"We need some long snapper depth. We’ve got to improve our snapping situation, not necessarily for right now but for future years to come."
So there you go. If you can snap a football accurately up to 12 yards (or you know someone that can), get them to Bohler Athletic Complex asap. There are forms there to fill out for an audition onto the team. That’s a great opportunity to possibly earn a football scholarship in the next couple of years, or at the very least get to say you played for the football team. Currently junior Alex Den Bleyker and walk-on Jerred Sonneborn are the best options, while fourth-year junior Ryan Saparto is also listed on the roster as the third option.
In other special teams’ news, at this moment in time it looks like Leon Brooks will continue his kickoff return duties this season. Despite several youngsters getting a look, Brooks is the most consistent, has speed to burn and makes the coaches most comfortable from a decision making standpoint, as well as a play-making standpoint. The Cougs were near the bottom of the conference last season in kickoffs returned but they were right in the middle of the conference in kickoff return average.
Punt returns have been sliced down to Brett Bartolone and Robert Lewis, last we knew. Bartolone had probably taken a slight edge a few days ago due to Lewis’ continued muffs over a couple day stretch. Washington State simply cannot afford a special teams turnover on the road to begin the year… or ever, if they can help it.
Starting Wide Receivers for Auburn
The Cougar starting wide outs are probably not etched in stone at this moment in time, but with six days to go they are close. In Friday’s walk-through session, the four that lined up with the 1’s were Gabe Marks and Dominique Williams on the outside, with Brett Bartolone and surprisingly Robert Lewis in the slots.
Lewis has grown tremendously and come on very strong in the past two weeks and gives the Cougs a mismatch in quickness at the position. The other three are proven commodities and make the coaches, quarterbacks and fans alike comfortable when they are on the field. There are 10 receivers currently vying for 8 spots on gameday, according to earlier reports by Mike Leach and outside receivers’ coach Dennis Simmons.
More news coming as we are mere days from kicking off the 2013 season now!