The pair of verbally committed Cougar footballers picked to the team are Jordan Pulu, a 6-2, 240-pound linebacker from Federal Way, and Sam Flor, a 6-4, 285-pound offensive lineman from O'Dea High in Seattle. The future Cougar baseballer player named to the team is 5-11, 185-pound receiver Austin Pernell of Kentlake.
Pulu was dubbed by the Times as "the rock" of a defense that allowed just 64.2 yards rushing per game. Earlier, Pulu had been voted his league's linebacker of the year after posting 61 regular-season tackles.
Flor was the Metro League Mountain Division offensive lineman of the year. He's a three-year starter who maintains a 3.8 GPA and will lead O'Dea into the state 3A title game tonight against Bellevue.
That Bellevue team includes All-Area defensive back Tyler Hasty, the son of former WSU and NFL performer James Hasty. Another son of a Cougar, Skyline linebacker Peyton Pelluer, also tabbed to the All-Area team. His dad is Scott Pelluer, a Cougar linebacker in the late '70s/early '80s and a one-time color analyst on Cougar radio broadcasts.
The Times' All-Area team covers all high schools in King and Snohomish counties.
LITTLE-KNOWN LEACH FACT: Chris Brown, a self-described wonk and football techie who publishes a nifty site called SmartFootball.com, offered up an interesting nugget of information this week in a lengthy story on Mike Leach.
Back before he was The Pirate, serving as Hal Mumme's offensive coordinator at Kentucky, Leach and Mumme paid a visit to Ol' Wazzu shortly after the 1998 Rose Bowl. They came to the Palouse to pick Mike Price's brain on formations and receiver screens. "It may be irrelevant, but Mumme’s Air Raid had always been a two-back offense, while in 1997 Washington State ran a ton of four-wides with one back. That personnel group and formation would later dominant Leach’s offense when he began running his own show," Brown writes.
FOUR INDIVIDUALS WITH TIES to Washington State -- Jason McEndoo, Robin Pflugrad, Jake Miller and Kevin Norrell -- have enjoyed much success the season in the Football Championship Subdivision (formerly Division I-AA) this year.
McEndoo, a standout offensive lineman on WSU’s 1998 Rose Bowl team, has been named FCS Assistant Coach of the Year. He has been the offensive line coach at Montana State for nine years. The seventh-ranked Bobcats are 9-2 and have qualified for the FCS playoffs.
Pflugrad, an assistant coach at Washington State from 2002-05, was named Coach of the Year in the Big Sky Conference. Pflugrad guided fifth-ranked Montana to the Big Sky co-championship with Montana State. The 9-2 Grizzlies advance to the FCS playoffs. Pflugrad also is one of 20 finalists for the Eddie Robinson Award as FCS Coach of the Year.
Miller, who left WSU early in fall camp last year as a freshman walk-on, is one of 20 finalists for the inaugural Jerry Rice Award as FCS freshman of the year. He made honorable mention All-Big Sky as a redshirt freshman at Eastern Washington. He ranks second in the league in punting with a 44.2-yard average.
Norrell, a part-time starter at WSU as a freshman in 2008, is one of the leading receivers on FCS playoff qualifier Stony Brook (N.Y.). A junior college transfer, Norrell has caught 37 passes for 559 yards and four touchdowns as a part-time starter for the 22nd-ranked Seawolves (9-3).