What a great week! WSU Marketing delivered an awesome poster, we’ve got the game tomorrow in Spokane (which will be streamed on SWX Right Now Sports) and we have a new Guest Blogger from Sportsminds.org! (you can see a link to their blog on the right hand side of your screen under Partner Blogs).
Please allow me to introduce Dan Shirley. Go Cougs! – Erik
With the snow giving way for sun, this marks the nearing end of the school year on the Palouse. We have seen the end of one coaching tenure (I wish you the best in your future endeavors, Wulff) and the beginning of the next.
While we all questioned the game time decisions that have been happening for a couple of years, such as punting while down 17 with three minutes remaining, there was one thing that Wulff brought to the table and Moos/Leach are building off of. This is the emotion that comes with being part of the Cougar family. When one decides to join this family, they are making an emotional promise to turn the knob to 11 when it comes to Washington State football.
While we have been seeing countless posts of predictions, analysis, and recruiting news from the crew over at CougCenter along with top of the line discussions in the Cougfan forums, one thing that is hard to put into words is the emotion that comes from everything that has taken us by storm this year.
I’ll admit; I have become complacent over the years with our football performance. People that I grew up with that made the horrible life choice of wearing purple and gold outside were starting to convince me that WSU might just be a mediocre football school. It’s been quite some time since we set foot in a bowl game (our last trip was December 30, 2003 when we beat Texas in the Holiday Bowl, 28-20) and all of the great quarterbacks had come and gone.
Despite all of that, I had made a promise to my family that I would support them and be there for them when they needed me most. Whether this was vehemently arguing against people that were bad mouthing WSU, wearing my crimson not just on Fridays, or doing whatever else was necessary, I was there for my fellow Cougs.
Turn the clock forward a bit and you find us in the post Apple Cup lull where our season was complete and we didn’t know who our new coach was going to be. Then, one fateful day, Mike Leach was announced as the new coach of the football team, captain of the ship if you may. I was flabbergasted. This was a pipedream of mine and many others. There was no way that a little school like WSU out in the middle of nowhere would be able to get the mighty Leach. But lo and behold, thanks to Bill Moos and an insane amount of TV money from the PAC-12 Network (can’t get here soon enough), signing Leach was now more than a possibility. It was a reality.
Being a math major, I have to take pointless classes like Mathematical Reasoning that are taught by professors that aren’t obsessed with WSU athletics. Said professors also like to schedule mid-term exams during the exact same time as the press conference for Leach’s announcement. There was no way that I was going to miss the opportunity to hear one of Leach’s speeches in person. So, during the countless hours that I spent wide awake at night out of sheer excitement, I had decided that I would rush through the exam no matter what my grade would be in order to make it to the CUB senior ballroom (I got a high B on the exam in case you were wondering. I’m a huge nerd.).
This was a moment that I will remember forever. Silly anecdotes about skeletons in his office at Texas Tech and lessons about how to swing your sword are still floating around my head as I write this. I was more than willing to possibly cause myself some embarrassment by walking around campus all day in a wig, eye patch, and a pirate hat in order to make myself believe that this was actually happening.
What I first imagined as a hype that would fade after a week turned into a reignited flame that has still not burnt out. I see ticket sales increasing. I see people walking past Martin Stadium suddenly have a smile run across their face. I see people waving WSU shirts at the Masters! Mike Leach served as the catalyst to get us pumped once again to see our boys in crimson and gray run out of the tunnel. Never let this feeling die, for when it does, you’ll slip back into the dark abyss known as complacency.
Let me add a new definition to your dictionary. Couging it: Winning. Being excited. Willing to believe that WSU will win the 2013 BCS National Championship.