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Washington State Cougars National Championship Odds
Mike Leach has things rolling at Washington State, as the Cougars are coming off a season in which they won a school-record 11 games and were in the hunt for the Pac-12 title from start to finish. The Air Raid attack has proven effective against conference foes and the expectations remain high for Washington State heading into 2019. While the team is not the favorite to claim the conference championship, it is expected to be right in the mix, and a few fortuitous bounces could result in the Pac-12 crown. The Cougars have a unique style that has proven to be tough for opponents to handle.
2019 Washington State Cougars at a Glance
Cougars National Championship Odds: 100/1
Cougars Odds to Win Pac 12: +1000
Cougars Regular Season Win Total: 8
Washington State’s style is to throw the ball all around the field and force teams to keep up in shootouts. Gardner Minshew did a fantastic job of that last season at quarterback, finishing fifth in the Heisman Trophy voting. However, he has graduated and now the team is hoping FCS All-American transfer Gage Gubrud can take the reins and keep it rolling. The other quarterback options are Anthony Gordon and Trey Tinsley. Leach has kept the same style for years to great success, and he will keep it rolling in 2019.
The wide receiver corps brings back a lot of experience. Davontavean Martin and Dezmon Patmon both had more than 60 receptions a season ago and should have another big year. While the team is pass-happy, keeping teams honest with the run is still important, and Max Borghi is expected to be the primary running back.
The defense has a tough task with the way the offense plays, as it is on the field for a lot of plays every game. The Cougars don’t have to shut down opponents because of what they do on the other side of the ball, but if they can come up with big stops and turnovers on occasion it will be a big help. Washington State must replace key linebacker Peyton Pelluer, but does have some options there. The team’s top newcomer could be nose tackle Lamonte McDougle, who is aiming to be stout against the run while getting after opposing quarterbacks. The secondary unexpectedly lost star safety Jalen Thompson to the supplemental draft and that’s a key player that must be replaced.
Washington State has some holes to fill but the expectations are still high. The quarterback has to be replaced but there should be no concerns that the team can ramp it up once again, and wins should be coming consistently once again in 2019.
2019 Washington State Cougars Betting Schedule
||Washington State vs. New México State
||Saturday, August 31
||Washington State vs. Northern Colorado
||Saturday, September 7
||Washington State vs. Houston
||Friday, September 13
||Washington State vs. UCLA
||Saturday, September 21
||Washington State at Utah
||Saturday, September 28
||Washington State at Arizona State
||Saturday, October 12
||Washington State vs. Colorado
||Saturday, October 19
||Washington State at Oregon
||Saturday, October 26
||Washington State at California
||Saturday, November 9
||Washington State vs. Stanford
||Saturday, November 16
||Washington State vs. Oregon State
||Saturday, November 23
||Washington State at Washington
||Friday, November 29
The hiring of Leach in 2012 got Washington State football back on the map. Not that the program had fallen completely off, but there were some dark times before Leach arrived. During his 10 years at Texas Tech, Leach never had a losing record and guided the Red Raiders to nine bowl games. After getting his feet wet in Pullman, Leach has the program pointed in the right direction.
Washington State set a program record with 10 wins in 1929 and followed that with a 9-win campaign and Pacific Coast Conference (now the Pac-12) title in 1930. The Cougars lost the Rose Bowl that season, their first appearance in a major college postseason game and last until 1981 when the team was invited to the Holiday Bowl. Dennis Erickson led the team to its first bowl victory that season. A run of sustained success came under Mike Price, who replaced Erickson in 1989. The Cougars posted three 10-win seasons during Price’s regime and won three bowl games. They reached No. 3 in the AP rankings in 2002 when WSU won its last conference title.
The Cougars won 10 games for a third straight season in 2003 under Bill Doba, but that was the end of the most dominant stretch of football in school history. WSU didn’t win more than six games in a season over the next four and Paul Wulff took over in 2008. A successful FCS coach, Wulff was overmatched and let go after compiling a 5-32 record in three seasons. In just his second season Leach had the Cougars back in a bowl game for the first time in a decade and now he is coming off a fantastic 11-win season. Washington State is not the easiest place to recruit but Leach has done a masterful job of returning the program to relevance.
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