PULLMAN – Washington State track star Jeshua Anderson looks like he’s training for cross country, and that’s a good thing for the WSU football team.
Anderson and other key players on the injured list have been running extensively at football practices this week, raising hope they’ll be ready for the season opener Sept. 5 against Stanford.
Following WSU’s last full scrimmage Friday afternoon, coach Paul Wulff said the Cougars might have everyone on the two-deep chart ready for Stanford. Wull has not announced who will start at quarterback.
“One of two guys,” Wulff said with a smile.
Wulff said Tuesday’s practice might be the first one in which senior Kevin Lopina or sophomore Marshall Lobbestael is designated the starter. The coach said it remains possible both quarterbacks will play early in the season.
“I know both of them will get the job done, so I’m comfortable with any quarterback I have,” sophomore wide receiver Kevin Norrell said. “They’re both doing a great job.”
The coaches, wary of injuries, ruled out full-scale tackling in the hour-long scrimmage. Some veterans saw little or no action. Balls were picked up and moved to the red zone on occasion, which had an impact on statistics.
Lopina completed nine of 11 passes for 123 yards, including a 7-yard touchdown to true freshman wideout Gino Simone. Lobbestael went 7-of-13 for 88 yards and no TDs.
Simone led everyone with four catches and 56 receiving yards. True freshmen handled all the running back duties. Carl Winston ran 3 yards for the only rushing touchdown. Xavier Hicks blocked a punt and would have run it back for a touchdown if a whistle hadn’t blown.
Center-guard Andrew Roxas, sidelined all camp with an unspecified viral illness, has gone home to California to see a specialist. He started eight games last year, but was expected to play a reserve role this year. … True freshmen Travis Long (left end) and middle linebacker Darren Markle (middle linebacker) are starting on defense. … An autograph session and other free fan activities are set for 10:30 a.m.-noon today at Martin Stadium. ... The temperature neared 100 degrees at the start of Friday’s scrimmage, and it was hotter on the artificial turf. Perhaps 150 fans turned out, including former Washington Huskies coach Keith Gilbertson. His son, David, is a walk-on freshman quarterback. ... Stanford is favored by 17 points over Washington State. FSN will televise the game at 3 p.m. (not 5, as originally scheduled) from Pullman.