November 24, 2012
Gold star for the Cougars?
Hey Coug fans! Congrats! You're Apple Cup Champions!
In was has otherwise been a disappointing season, Washington State Cougars can at least hang their hat on the fact that they defeated their cross-state rivals. The University of Washington may be headed to a bowl game, but they won't have bragging rights over their smaller sibling. They choked this game away against an opponent that just wanted it more.
But lets turn the blame a little bit. WSU played inspired. Never gave up, even when down 18 points in the fourth quarter. They made the big plays. They had energy. Where was this team all year long?
They've literally been walking corpses throughout the entire Pac-12 slate, and you're telling me that Washington just played a stinker of a game? Other than the morbid offense that they have had all season, this was the same Huskies squad that's been good enough to be ranked nationally. So why can't the Cougs do this for a full season?
Embattled (and apparently "abusive") Cougars coach Mike Leach has said all season long that his team lacks mental toughness. They lacked that under Paul Wulff. They proved it again this year. Any Washington State fan who is truly a fair observer of the game of football understands that these kids were not very likable this season. Hit a little adversity in a game and they crumbled.
It was an epidemic, no wonder Leach called them "corpses."
Now, when they actually have a little fire in their belly, they defeat one of the country's better teams? You've got to be kidding me Cougs. You've had this in you all along?
Hopefully Leach can establish a tougher mentality. Fans have better hope he does because they're going to need it in the very tough Pac-12 Conference. Unless the only game you want to win is the Apple Cup, the players need to be more juiced, more often.