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Wulff's last game as Cougars' coach?

  • Washington State coach Paul Wulff (left) and Washington coach Steve Sarkisian shake hands at the end of the game.

    Jennifer Buchanan / The Herald

    Washington State coach Paul Wulff (left) and Washington coach Steve Sarkisian shake hands at the end of the game.

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By Rich Myhre
Herald Writer
SEATTLE -- It might well have been his final game as Washington State's head football coach, but Paul Wulff left the field on Saturday night excited about the future of Cougar football.
Now he has to wait and see if he is part of it.
Wulff, a former WSU player, closed his fourth season as head coach with a 38-21 loss to Washington in the Apple Cup at CenturyLink Field. His team finished 4-8 this season and 2-7 in the Pac-12 North Division to finish last among six teams. His four-year mark is 9-41.
Hardly numbers to ensure job security, although Wulff said after Saturday's game that his program is pointed in the right direction.
"Right now what I can tell you is that this is a really talented young football team," said Wulff when asked about his status. "I think we've done a hell of a job recruiting great young kids. The football program has a bright future. That was my job and I've been doing that, and I'm very excited about Cougar football.
"Our program has come a long ways," he added. "I'm very proud of where we're at. We're right on the cusp of being really, really good."
His fate, however, hangs in the hands of WSU athletic director Bill Moos, who is expected to meet with Wulff either today or Monday. And there are reports that Moos is ready to fire Wulff, who has one year left on his contract.
If that is true, it would mean that other members of Wulff's staff could also be out of jobs, including assistant head coach and defensive coordinator Chris Ball.
"I think the program is headed in the right direction and I think Coach Wulff is the guy for the job," Ball said after Saturday's game. "We've got a great staff in place. We've got the whole team coming back. We've shown improvement. The kids are playing hard. And we're still recruiting.
"I think there's been big improvement, I really do. ... We had a couple of games slip away or we could be sitting here bowl eligible. So we're that close."
Senior wide receiver Jared Karstetter, who finished his WSU career in Saturday's game, put in a vote for having Wulff return next season.
"He wants to be here," Karstetter said. "This is not a (career) stepping stone for him. He's a Coug and he loves this place. He's a good coach and it just takes time."
Making his mark
WSU sophomore wide receiver Marquess Wilson finished a record-setting season on Saturday with seven receptions for 108 yards and two touchdowns. He has the WSU single-season records for receptions (82) and receiving yards (1,388), and his two TD catches give him 12 for the season, leaving him tied for second with Jason Hill (2004) and one behind Hill's school-record total of 13 (2005).
"The second half just didn't go our way," Wilson said of the loss to Washington. "We stopped executing on the offensive side, and couldn't stop them on defensive side. Everything just went in their favor."
Noisy in Seattle
Whether it's Husky Stadium or CenturyLink Field, a football game in Seattle is usually noisy, according to several WSU players.
With a crowd of 64,559 on hand at CenturyLink Field, most of them UW boosters, "it was pretty loud," said WSU quarterback Marshall Lobbestael. "Husky Stadium is pretty loud, too, but definitely it was loud out there at times, especially on third down.
"But we've been in loud stadiums before and we handle that with our snap counts. Aside from one delay of game (penalty) it didn't cause us too many problems."
According to Wilson, WSU's offensive problems had nothing to do with a raucous stadium.
"It was our fault that we didn't come out and execute the way we could," he said.
Story tags » Cougars FootballHuskies Football

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