Game Preview: WSU at UCLA
Washington State (3-1) at UCLA (2-3)
UCLA Players to watch:
TE Joe Fauria, Jr. - The 6-foot-8 nephew of former NFL TE Christian Fauria is beginning to make a name for himself as a Bruin. He snagged two TD catches last week against Stanford giving him four on the year. He is a huge target with natural hands and is easy to spot for any QB.
QB Richard Brehaut, Jr. - The two-sport star (baseball) is quietly having a solid season to date with six TDs and zero interceptions. His mobility, quick release and accuracy stand out.
SS Tony Dye, Sr. - Has been injured some this season but is the leader of a solid young secondary and the most physical of the bunch. If you see a big hit on an opposing teams WO, it will likely be delivered by the aggressive Dye.
DC Aaron Hester, Jr. - The athletic cover corner leads the Bruins with four passes defended and has been a model of consistency on the season. He plays with confidence and is also solid in run support.
Washington State players to watch:
WO Jared Karstetter, Sr. - The 6-foot-4 receiver pulled down nine catches last week vs. Colorado, giving him 128 for his career. He loves to compete and fights to get open, giving the Cougars a consistent third down target for their productive offense.
WO Isiah Barton, Sr. - The speedy kickoff returner has surprised on offense as well with 4 TD grabs on only 19 catches total. He can beat press coverage off the line of scrimmage and gives the Cougars a legitimate deep threat to their pass game.
PK Andrew Furney, So. - The consistent Furney has a powerful leg and has yet to miss this season. Built more like a LB at 220 pounds, he has become a vital weapon this season with a long of 51 yards.
QB Marshall Lobbestael, Sr. - Has done an outstanding job filling in for the injured Jeff Tuel as he has thrown 13 TDs with only 3 INTs. Has not always been consistent throughout his career here but is putting it together at the right time while leading the Cougars to a 3-1 record.
The Cougars look promising under head coach Paul Wulff. The intense former Cougar offensive lineman has his troops playing very well as a unit and playing with confidence. They came back from a ten point deficit last week vs. Colorado and won the game. Now they enter a difficult part of their schedule, but with the offense clicking, especially the pass game, this team can continue to make some noise in the Pac-12. The Bruins are a little hot/cold right now and can't seem to find an identity on either side of the ball. They do have a nice one-two punch running combination in Johnathan Franklin and Derrick Coleman and this could pose problems for the Cougar defense. The Bruins have better talent but Washington State is playing with a lot of heart and showing a resolve that hasn't been seen in a few years in Pullman. Expect this to be a close, competitive game for four quarters as the kicking game will likely decide the outcome.