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Courtesy: Washington State Athletics
Cougars Set to Host Montana State Saturday
Courtesy: Washington State Athletics
Release: 09/06/2010
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Sept. 6, 2010

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Gameday Central

PULLMAN, Wash. -

Washington State Cougars (0-1) vs.
Montana State Bobcats (0-0, 0-0)
September 11, 2010 • Martin Stadium • 4 p.m. (PT)
TV: FSN NW Production (Distribution TBA)
Radio: Washington State ISP Sports Network

SATURDAY'S GAME: The Washington State University football team makes its 2010 Martin Stadium debut, hosting Montana State University at 4 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 11. The contest marks the first of six games in Martin Stadium during the 2010 season.

FSN TO TELEVISE WSU-MSU: FSN will televise Saturday's game between Washington State and Montana State with Greg Heister calling play-by-play, Jason Gesser as the analyst and Jen Mueller reporting from the sidelines. Distribution outlets were still being determined as of Monday night. Those will be released when available from FSN NW.

WSU vs. MONTANA STATE - THE SERIES: The Cougars and Bobcats have previously met six times, with WSU winning all six games. The series began in 1905 with a 32-0 victory for what was then known as Washington State College, but the two teams didn't meet again for nearly 76 years. Since resuming the series in 1981, the Cougars and Bobcats have played five games, all in either Spokane or Pullman, most recently in 2002 when WSU posted a 45-28 win.

COUGARS IN HOME-OPENERS: WSU is 75-34-3 all-time in home openers, including games in Pullman, Spokane and Seattle. Since 1990 the Cougars boast a 13-7 record in home debuts, and are 23-12 dating back to the start of the 1975 season.

SEPTEMBER 11 AND THE BOBCATS: The Cougars are playing on Sept. 11 for just the second time since the terrorist attacks of 2001. WSU played Colorado on the date three years later in 2004, after the team was initially scheduled to play the Buffaloes Sept. 15, 2001. Like every game that weekend across the country, the game between WSU and Colorado was cancelled. When the Buffaloes and Cougars couldn't find an open date to reschedule later in the season, WSU and MSU scheduled a contest for Oct. 18. WSU was victorious 53-28, extending its record to 7-0 to begin the 2001 season.

WSU VS. THE BIG SKY: Dating back to a 34-0 victory over Montana in 1903, the Cougars have played 43 games against teams currently in the Big Sky Conference. WSU is 41-2 in those games - including 19 shutouts - and has not lost to a team currently in the Big Sky in more than 60 years. The Cougars have won 13-straight meetings to Big Sky schools since a 13-12 road loss to Montana in 1947. The only other loss was also to the Grizzlies, a 10-0 setback, also in Missoula. The Cougars are 25-0 when playing a current Big Sky school in Pullman.

WSU VS. FCS: Since the formation of the Pacific-10 Conference in 1978, the Cougars have won all 14 games played against Football Championship Subdivision (formerly Division I-AA) schools. Five of the victories have come against the Bobcats, and 10 of the wins have come against teams currently in the Big Sky.

FRESHMAN PHENOM: True freshman wide receiver Marquess Wilson caught four passes for 108 yards and a touchdown against Oklahoma State, becoming just the fourth Cougar freshman in school history to eclipse the 100-yard mark, and the first Cougar freshman to do so in his collegiate debut. Phillip Bobo accomplished the feat three times in 1990 (USC, Arizona State and Washington), and Jason White (Stanford; 1998) and Jeshua Anderson (Oregon; 2007) each did it once. Wilson scored on a 48-yard reception, and hauled in a 46-yarder later in the game.

NEWCOMERS SEEING TIME: Of the 60 players to see the field against Oklahoma State, 24 were making their debuts with the Cougars, or 40 percent. The Cougars played seven true freshmen - after playing just six in all of 2009 - and nine redshirt freshmen. Six players also made their starting debuts for the Cougars, including redshirt freshman cornerback Nolan Washington, redshirt junior defensive tackle Brandon Rankin, redshirt senior running back James Montgomery, redshirt sophomore tight end Andrei Lintz, junior offensive tackle David Gonzales and junior offensive guard Wade Jacobson.

HANNAM LOOKS TO EXTEND STREAK: Senior offensive tackle Micah Hannam enters the Montana State game looking to extend his consecutive starts streak. Hannam has started every game of his Cougar career, 38 straight, dating back to his first career start at Wisconsin to open the 2007 season. Hannam is tied for the longest starting streak in the conference with Arizona center Colin Baxter.

BIG LEG: Senior kicker Nico Grasu's 56-yard field goal in the second quarter against Oklahoma State was a career long, and the sixth-longest field goal in school history. It was the longest by a Cougar kicker since Rian Lindell's 57-yarder against Boise State, Sept. 27, 1997, and the first Cougar field goal of 50 or more yards since Lindell's 50-yarder against Oregon State, Oct. 30, 1999.

FORREST LEADS NATION: Senior punter Reid Forrest is not only leaving his mark on the WSU record books, he has gone national. Forrest leads all active punters in career punts (218), punt yardage (9,149) and is 13th in career average (41.97).

PUNTING HIS WAY TO THE TOP: With nine punts against Oklahoma State, redshirt senior punter Reid Forrest moved into second place on WSU's career punts list, passing Gavin Hedrick (217; 1974-77) on the all-time list. Forrest has 218 career punts, and now trails only Kyle Basler (255; 2002-05) for the most in school history. Forrest is also inching his way to the top of the list for all-time punt yards. He has 9,149 for his career, third on the all-time list behind Basler (10,794) and Hedrick (9,409). His punting average of 42.0 ranks third all-time amongst punters with more than 150 career punts, behind Hedrick (43.4) and Basler (42.3).

INJURIES CLAIM TWO MORE FOR SEASON: The Cougars lost three student-athletes to season-ending injuries prior to the first game and following the Oklahoma State game, two more were added to the list. Prior to the OSU game, true freshman Aaron Dunn (wrist), redshirt freshman defensive tackle Jordan Pu'u Robinson (ACL), and redshirt sophomore safety LeAndre Daniels (neck fracture) were lost for the season. At Oklahoma State, true freshman running back Rickey Galvin (broken right forearm) and sophomore fullback Jared Byers (left knee injury) left the game in the first half with their injuries and will miss the remainder of the season. Galvin underwent successful surgery Sept. 5 while Byers will undergo surgery in the near future.

NWACHUKWU A LOWE'S CANDIDATE: Washington State University senior Chima Nwachukwu was one of 30 NCAA® football bowl subdivision student-athletes candidates for the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award in football. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence - community, classroom, character and competition. A 2009 ESPN The Magazine Second Team Academic All-American, Nwachukwu is a three-year starter for the Cougars, playing both the safety and cornerback positions. A native of Allen, Texas, the senior posted a 4.0 GPA during his sophomore and junior years and served as WSU's 2009-10 Student-Athlete Advisory Committee president. Additionally, Nwachukwu has assisted in several community outreach programs, including the Cougs Helping Haiti Fundraiser, Nike Shoe Drive and Reading Buddies, a program where student-athletes volunteer once a week to read to elementary school students. An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.

WSU AGAINST NONCONFERENCE FOES: Since the opening of the 2001 season, WSU is 20-7 against unranked nonconference opponents. WSU has wins over Idaho (seven times), Nevada (twice), Montana State (twice), Boise State, Purdue, New Mexico, Colorado, Grambling State, Baylor, Portland State and SMU. When playing in Martin Stadium in that span, the Cougars are 11-0.
Washington State Cougars Football