Washington State Football: Top 5 Impact Players in 2014

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Sept. 22, 2012; Pullman, WA, USA; Colorado Buffaloes quarterback

Jordan Webb

(4) gets by Washington State Cougars defensive end

Xavier Cooper

(96) while on his way to the end zone during the second half at Martin Stadium. Colorado won 35-34. Mandatory Credit: James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

4: Xavier Cooper

As we mentioned a couple of days ago, “Coop” is a man that the WSU defense will feed off of in 2014. He made some plays last season, totaling 50 tackles, 13.5 tackles for loss and recording five sacks. If he can become more of an enforcer this upcoming season the defense should be in much better shape than they’re expected to be due to that young secondary.

Remember Rien Long? As we looked into the impact players from Spring camp last season, I remember how high everyone was on this kid. Cooper was expected to have that Rien Long-type of impact on each and every football game.

While he did a nice job, even a solid job, there weren’t many times when I noticed him really making an impact on the game from his end position. This season we can expect even more from Xavier Cooper. When you’re named to the ‘College Football Performance Awards (CFPA) Defensive Lineman Trophy watch list’, you need to be a producer. Coop has the chance to make a name for himself and raise the level of the defense with his play.