Breaking news: MOOS IS LOOSE ON THE PALOUSE

BILL MOOS

BILL MOOS, a guy literally born, raised and educated a Cougar, is coming home. The man who built Oregon from also-ran to a center of attention will be Washington State's next athletic director, reliable sources tell CF.C. The formal announcement will be made Wednesday by WSU in a 2 p.m. press conference.

Contract details have yet to be disclosed but Moos was making approximately $600,000 per year as Oregon's Athletic Director. Sources believe he will take over in Pullman no later than May 1 and is expected to sign a seven-year contract. Wednesday's press conference will be streamed at http://experience.wsu.edu/.

MOOS' 12-YEAR TENURE at Oregon is well known. So are his crimson bloodlines -- born to a pair of WSU grads, raised in Edwall, a standout lineman under Jim Sweeney, an associate athletic director in the 1980s.

What many fans may not know is that Moos desperately wanted to become WSU's athletic director after Jim Livengood left for Arizona in 1994. Moos was the AD at Montana at the time and by all accounts had done wonderful things in Missoula.

Many in the Cougar Nation wanted him back, but then-President Sam Smith opted to go a different direction. As it turns out, it was a dramatically different direction. Rick Dickson alienated legions, condemned the basketball and baseball programs to a decade of woe, muzzled Glenn Johnson, and was rattling sabres at Mike Price. And that's just for starters.

As his reign of error was unfolding, Cougar fans looked starry eyed at what favorite son Bill Moos was doing at Oregon.

The what-might-have-beens are over now, however, as Moos will have a chance -- albeit 16 years later -- to prove everybody right.

MOOS' PLATE WILL BE full. He'll need to wrap up funding for Phase III of the Martin Stadium upgrade; address mounting facilities needs; balance an ever-tightening budget; devise a plan for increasing donations to athletics; and, as he noted in his public forum in Pullman last week, foster a culture in which mediocrity is not OK.

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