Washington State Wednesday: Notes

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The focus shifts to the defense in preparation for Mike Leach's "Air Raid" offense.
  • Washington State QB Connor Halliday attempted 65 passes in the Cougars season opening loss at Auburn.  Lane Kiffin expects Leach to chuck it even more this week.  "He's going to throw it a lot," Kiffin said.  "I would expect him to throw the ball 75-80 times."
  • Leach's approach is becoming less of an aberration and more of a trend.  "Now we've come to a position in the Pac-12 where I think nickel is your base defense.  It's just where we are in college football," said Kiffin.
  • Clancy Pendergast was impressed with the Cougars performance in the season opener, and he knows Leach's offense poses a ton of challenges.  "He is going to use all areas of the field in the run and the pass," he said about Leach.
  • Given the high volume of pass attempts, the USC pass rush could be a huge factor.  "Every week it is important," said Pendergast about pressuring the QB.  "This week, it is going to be harder because the ball comes out so quick."
  • The Trojans secondary was banged up last week with both starting cornerbacks, Kevon Seymour and Anthony Brown, leaving the game early with injuries.  If needed, Josh Shaw is ready to play anywhere.  "They have me repping everywhere," said Shaw about his preparation this week.
  • Shaw has become a central figure on this team.  He is known as a quiet player away from the field, who lets his play do the talking in between the lines.  However, he made it known that he wanted a single digit number, and now he has his No. 6.  Kiffin explained that he "earned" it, and called Shaw one of the "neat players" on the team.
  • Here is Kiffin on his defense, stopping the Cougs and the emergence of Jabari Ruffin...

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