Patience is a Virtue

Patience is a Virtue at Washington State

Patience is a virtue and certainly one that the Washington State Cougars need to have.  The Cougars have not experienced a winning season since 2003, which was also the last year they went to a bowl game, a 28-20 win over Texas.  The better part of this decade has been filled with disappointment for the Cougars. Head Coach Paul Waulff is out to change their fortunes this year.

After posting two two win seasons and one single win season Coach Paul Waulff’s seat is getting very hot underneath him this year. I am sure he knows that. The coach before him, Bill Doba was given four poor seasons before he was shown the door, and now coach Waulff is entering his fourth season.  Coach Waulff is out to prove to the Cougars fan base that he is the right man for the job this year and is shaping this team to be competitive in the long run.

As fans continue to wait for a successful season, hopefully they will look to see areas of improvement on the team, instead of just the win/loss column. The improvement areas that should be most closely monitored are offensive and defensive lines. The Cougars were dreadful in both of those key components last year, finishing 10th in the Pac Ten in both sacks and sacks allowed. In the game of football you need to be able to dominate the trenches to be successful, something that Cougars did not do at all. When you dominate the offensive front the run game opens up, and you give your quarterback time to pick apart the defense with your aerial assault. On defense, putting pressure on the opposing signal caller only leads to great things. Play calling gets changed, teams give up on their game plans, quarterbacks hurry throws, timing is thrown off, and mistakes happen. All of these add up to a dominating defense that forces many turnovers, something the Cougars need to do and do often to be successful.

It is unfair to expect the Cougars to have an outstanding season this year, so I would not suggest giving up on Coach Waulff if this year is not a bowl bound year, providing the team takes a step in the right direction. Remember he took over a program that was basically in shambles. They went from a Pac Ten contender to a Pac Ten pretender in four years. This is not something that gets fixed easily. Losing that quickly and suddenly reflects poorly on the program and hurts recruiting and the fan base drastically. The rebuilding it takes to fix a program that fell that far that quickly, is much like fixing the economy today. It simply will take time. It does not matter how smart you are or how good of a coach you are, the program simply needs time to recover. Don’t give up on Coach Waulff just yet. Many times hiring a new coach hurts the program even more, as now there needs to be a rebuilding of the rebuilding process and new ideas and schemes come in. So Washington State and all Cougar fans, patience is a virtue. So be patient and keep faith.  

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