COUGAR BASKETBALL NOTEBOOK

ABE LODWICK

PULLMAN–Ken Bone and other NCAA Division I hoops coaches are waiting anxiously for NCAA Leadership Council voting Thursday on proposed recruiting changes sought by the Division I Coaches Congress. A key change would permit coaches to make direct contact with high school players the summer after their sophomore season. The current rule bans such contact until the summer after their junior season.

"That's just to get to know the kids better," Ken Bone said Wednesday after the Cougars scrimmaged at Friel Court. "Kids are starting to make a commitment at such a young age."

Bone also supports a proposed change back to an old rule that permitted coaches to watch players at April events. As part of the proposal, July recruiting days would be reduced from 20 to three four-day periods.

"I like gauging them in April and then seeing them again in July," Bone said. "It's a good balance in the recruiting process."

Bone said he doesn't know if any of the proposed changes would give Washington State an advantage.

He likes to think one exception would be the proposal to pay travel expenses for two parents or guardians to accompany players on official campus recruiting visits. Presently, only the travel expenses of players are covered.

Coaches have named Abe Lodwick and Marcus Capers team captains for the second straight year, and Fresno State transfer Mike Ladd was voted captain in a vote by players.

The player vote is new this year. Bone said he likes the players' choice.

"Mike is a good leader," Bone said. "He's well respected."

Bone said he was impressed with the play of several Cougars in Wednesday's scrimmage – the team's first with officials – but the coach wasn't completely satisfied.

"I didn't like the energy," Bone said. "I know it's hard when you don't have that many subs, but I thought they could have played harder. I really liked some things. Brock (Motum) scored in a lot of different ways. DaVonte Lacy looked good. Reggie (Moore) drove and passed well. Faisal (Aden) made shots."

The Cougars play a home exhibition game with Lewis-Clark State on Nov. 5, then open the season Nov. 14 Gonzaga.

Stressing that it's early, Bone said he currently plans to start Motum and Lodwick up front and Aden, Capers and Moore in the backcourt. Ladd and Lacy have not been ruled out as starting guards, Bone said, and Patrick Simon (who sat out Wednesday's scrimmage with a sore Achilles tendon) and sophomore walk-on Will DiIorio are other potential starters.

"Sometimes, we'll go with four guards," Bone said.

The 6-foot-3, 202-pound Lacy, a freshman combo guard out of Curtis High School near Tacoma, is properly described by Bone as "a big, strong kid. DiIorio "works hard, has a great attitude," the coach said.

Senior Charlie Enquist and sophomore D.J. Shelton, a junior college transfer, join Motum as 6-10 post players on a team that lacks size overall. Bone noted that Enquist is playing with more confidence and aggressiveness. Shelton displayed court vision and passing skills on Wednesday that are unusual for a JC big man.

National letters of intent can be signed Nov. 9, the early signing period runs from Nov. 9-16. The Cougars have verbal commitments from four players – a high school center and three high school wing types – and Bone said he hasn't ruled out signing more players.

"We're always looking," Bone said.

College coaches are forbidden from commenting on specific recruits until they sign, but Bone said, "I'm pleased with how recruiting has gone."

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