Scout Premium Content

2014 COUGAR OUTLOOK: Defense, special teams

STATISTICALLY SPEAKING, it would seem the Washington State defense has nowhere to go but up in 2014 after finishing 10th or 11th in the Pac-12 in the four major categories measuring defensive prowess. Opportunism, though, is not one of them. And in that regard, the 2013 Cougar D did itself proud. The victories over USC and Utah illustrate the point.

So as the Cougars look to 2014, they'll aim to build on their opportunistic ways – but they'll be doing it without some their key 2013 playmakers. Notable losses: SS Deone Bucannon, S Casey Locker, CB Damante Horton, CB Nolan Washington, CB Anthony Carpenter, LB Justin Sagote, DL Matthew Bock and NT Ioane Gauta. Top returnees: NT Toni Pole, DE Xavier Cooper, DE Darryl Paulo, LB Darryl Monroe...