Monday, September 5, 2016

An Annual Tradition

Mike Leach - Current WSU coach and lover of pirates

Saturday marked the start of college football all across the country and as per the recent tradition with Washington State University football, the Cougars lost their opening game. This marked their fifth consecutive opening day loss. And for the second year in a row, the Cougars lost to an FCS team. Last year that didn't post a problem as the team went on to finish 9-4 and claim their first Bowl win in a long time.

I'm still optimistic for this season though, even if their record over the past decade would give any rational observer some doubt.  Since I first started at WSU in 2003, the football team has been in disarray.  Sure the Cougars went 10-3 in 2003 under new coach Bill Doba.  However, that record was more of a reflection of former coach Mike Price who left to go to Alabama but was fired before even taking the field.

In 2004, the team slipped to 5-6 and dwelled in the basement until last year when the team finished with a winning record.   Despite these dark years, there have been a few notable players. I've made an effort to pick up some WSU cards as I previously had none.

2009 Bowman Draft Picks - College Logo Patch Autographs

Brandon Gibson played during my time at WSU as he joined the team after it's 10-3 season in 2003. Unfortunately for him, he played as WSU made it's race to the bottom.  Nonetheless, he had a breakout year in 2007, with 9 TD receptions and 1180 years. 

Gibson played well enough to be drafted by the Eagles.  He ended up being traded to the Rams during his first season and spent three years with the Rams.  Gibson then signed with the Dolphins where he played two years.  Last year he signed with the Patriots but injured himself before the season even began.  As of now, he is a free agent.

Here's a highlight from his time in the NFL.

2016 Panini Contenders Draft Picks
2016 Leaf Draft - Autographs

Dom Williams was a product of the Mike Leach Air Raid offense.  Essentially what that means is that Leach is going to throw the ball and then throw the ball some more.  Dom Williams had 30 receiving touchdowns over his career at WSU, including last year's 4th quarter game tying TD against Oregon. WSU would go on to win it in a wild double OT, which is notable because that snapped an eight-game losing streak to Oregon.

Undrafted in April, Williams quickly signed with the Chargers.  He didn't make the 53-man cut but it looks like he was signed to the practice squad.  He has the speed so I hope he can make it through the year with them.

Two current players who don't have any cards are QB Luke Falk and WR Gabe Marks. Hopefully they get some recognition next card season as they are the backbone of the Air Raid offense right now.

I have more WSU cards to post so I'm going to try and make this a weekly feature after every game.

Go Cougs!

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