Season Outlook: Special teams

PULLMAN -- <b>Drew Dunning</b>, Washington State's all-time leading scorer, may be gone, but WSU head coach <b>Bill Doba</b> believes another leg in his arsenal will keep people buzzing about the Cougars' special teams.


Kyle Basler

"We've got the ‘Bas' back," says Doba, referring to junior punter Kyle Basler.

"He is the best I've ever been around. I've never had a punter named the most valuable defensive player in a bowl game like he was (2003 Holiday Bowl against Texas), that's for sure," Doba said.

Basler, a Ray Guy Award candidate, averaged 43.5 yards per punt as a sophomore and dropped 30 of 77 attempts inside the 20. The Elma, Wash., native was credited by Texas coach Mack Brown as the key to WSU's 28-20 win over the Longhorns in the Holiday Bowl after pinning them inside their own five yard line four times.


Graham Siderius

Junior Graham Siderius – the Reno Bambino -- will get the first crack at replacing Dunning on field goals and PATs. Siderius handled kickoff duties in 2003 and has more than enough leg strength to handle the job. Consistency was Siderius' Achilles heel during the spring.

Incoming freshman Loren Langley of Puyallup will get a look if Siderius falters. Langley was an all-league pick as a prep junior and senior, and second-team all-region choice by the Tacoma News Tribune. He kicked without a tee his senior season, nailing a 45-yard field goal. He also showed impressive leg strength on kickoffs, and even put one through the uprights.

Long snapping will be handled by tight end Troy Bienemann, with Riley Fitt-Chappell the understudy. The holder will be junior receiver Marty Martin of Puyallup.


Tramaine Murray


Jevon Miller

As for the return men, Doba would like to see junior Tramaine Murray and Jevon Miller's sprinter speed become a factor on kickoff and punt returns. Incoming playmakers Michael Bumpus, a five-star recruit from Culver City, Calif., and Jerome Harrison, a touted JC running back, are additional options back deep.


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