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Courtesy: Washington State Athletics
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Courtesy: Washington State Athletics
Release: 01/31/2013
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 Mike Leach
Cougar Chats, Copyright 2013, Washington State University Athletics. All rights reserved.

2013 Signing Day Central | Football Season Tickets

Chat with Washington State football head coach Mike Leach on Wednesday, February 6 at Noon PT.

Moderator: Good afternoon Cougars and welcome to today's Signing Day chat with Mike Leach. We have a lot of questions so let's get right to it.

Robert (Pullman): Our offensive and defensive lines were developing as the season progressed. How will these new guys help our lines?
Mike Leach: Robert, we placed a great emphasis on our lines this year. We believe games are won and lost in the trenches and this will always be an area of high importance to us. It's hard to predict exactly who will help us the quickest on the lines. But we are excited about all of them.

Jerry S. (Spokane): Now that you have been here one calander year is Pullman what you thought it would be? Why? Go Cougs!
Mike Leach: Jerry, Washington State University has far exceeded my expectations The teamwork in this whole region, starting with our administration is off the charts. I have a great staff to work with. Our players have been working at a higher level than ever before. Everybody has really been embracing the effort.

Kevin (Bremerton): Coach Leach, it has been over two months since WSU's victorious win over the Huskies. I have watched the fourth quarter more times than I can count on my hands and it still brings a smile to my face. Although every time I watch the end when you are walking out onto the field as everyone else is rushing onto the field, your facial expressions appear to show concern for a brief time and then changes with a slight smile. What was going through your mind as you walked out onto the field?
Mike Leach: Kevin, I was just taking it all in. I was still probably a little focused on the game. I thought it was a great job by our team and coaches and illustrated some of the improvement that I felt took place with our team as the season went on.

Kristian ( Seattle ): Which freshman are you must excited about?
Mike Leach: All of them. We started 15 freshmen last year. We got a great freshmen class this year and I'm sure some of them will contribute.

Thomas (Lynnwood): Love the linemen in this class,have you ever worked with a guy as big as Cody O'Connell?
Mike Leach: Thomas, when you consider the combination of height and weight not as big as Cody. I have worked with one or two that are heavier.

Austin (Chehalis): Tyler Bruggman is a recruit with a lot of hype. Is he a player that can have a legitimate shot at competing for the starting spot next year?
Mike Leach: We look at all of our quarterbacks every year. The biggest challenge for a freshman is to adapt and assimilate the packages as quickly as possible.

Jack (Portland, OR): Out of this class of men, which ones do you see making an immediate impact?
Mike Leach: and are able to get their talents on the field without any level of hesitation.

Kevin: Every chat you do, I ask about books. So what are you planning on reading between now and the start of football?
Mike Leach: Kevin, I'm in the middle of Barry Alvarez's book Don't Flinch. I'm also reading portions of a book my sister Laura is writing. It's about her medical work in poverty-stricken countries. I'm also working on a book with WSU professor Buddy Levy on Geronimo.

Tim (Pasco): Coach Leach, my question is what is the stress level like for the coaches going into signing day, especially with all the social media speculation?
Mike Leach: Tim, I think it varies depending on the coach. The biggest concern is how it may impact prospects. In the end, I just try to worry about what I can control.

Jay (Kennewick): Do you go into recruiting with set numbers in mind as far as positions go, or is it more of a 'best-available' situation when it comes to signing kids?
Mike Leach: Jay, typically specific positions and needs. On rare occasions you may pay special attention to a key difference maker

Wenatchee, Gary: Cougars have always, and will continue be committed to support our teams with passion, through everything (wins/losses,etc). As you are a new Coug, how do you let the new recruits parents know that this is the place to send their kids?
Mike Leach: Gary, the main thing I sell are the same qualities of WSU that attracted me to come here: The great college town community and atmosphere. The vision of our administration, Dr. Floyd and Bill Moos, with regard to building facilities and being on the top of the Pac-12. The quality of life and the safe community without distractions. And the challenge of getting WSU on top and back to bowl games.

Roger (Seattle): Coach Leach, how do you the secondary improving this upcoming season? Is Dockery and Jackson going to play a big role?
Mike Leach: Roger, I think the players we have will improve and I think they will be further enhanced with the additions to our recruiting class.

Ken: How great is it to see your old guys (like Welker & Crabtree) as central parts of Super Bowls, and does that play into recruiting at all, being able to tell kids 'look where you could be'? Do you still talk with those guys?
Mike Leach: Ken, I'm really excited about their success. I keep in touch with all of them. Currently, we have three receivers in the NFL that lead their teams in receiving: Wes Welker for the Patriots, Danny Amandola with the Rams and Michael Crabtree with the 49ers. Also a safety of mine Darcell McBath played for the 49ers in the Super Bowl.

Jason (Anacortes): WSU gave you a choice of a popcorn, an ice cream, a cotton candy, or a taffy pulling machine for the press conference room. What will you choose?
Mike Leach: I'm a popcorn guy.

Jay (Kennewick): The thought of Cole Madison (6'6 270 lbs) at inside WR brings a smile to my face. Is that a real possibility?
Mike Leach: Jay, Cole's got a lot of talent and can play several positions. He is certainly athletics when he catches the ball and runs through people.

Rick (Spokane): Coach, I was wondering how much the construction of the new F.O.B. will impact your practice routines for upcoming Spring and Fall practice?
Mike Leach: Rick, it will impact it a little, but the positives certainly outweigh the negatives when you consider when it's completed our Football Operations Building will be the best in the Pac-12.

Bob (Spokane): You have an enviable winter retreat in Key West. Have you had a chance to experience some of our beautiful areas of the Northwest during the summer?
Mike Leach: Bob, the Northwest is a vast region. I'm still exploring it as much as I can. I've been to Coeur d'Alene several times. I plan to go skiing this winter. Toward the top of my list, I plan to go check out the San Juan Islands.

Brett (Austin, TX): A lot of people are excited about Coach Yost becoming a Coug. What makes him special? Has he made it to Pullman yet?
Mike Leach: Brett, he has been in Pullman for a couple of weeks. He's one of finest offensive minds in the country. I really look forward to working with him to create the best offense that we can. The most impressive thing about him is the variety of skills and knowledge he has as it relates to football.

Jerry (Tacoma): Thanks for beating the huskies first off. What is your thought on the concussion topic with the game of Football?
Mike Leach: Jerry, I think there needs to be improvements. I think we need to continue to improve the technology to treat, prevent and diagnosis concussions.

Russell (Richland): It's great to see our program making inroads in Samoa. Do you see that being a key spot to bring in a kid or two from every year?
Mike Leach: We plan to utilize our contacts to continue to bring in quality players from that area.

Greg (Vancouver): Who's the better cook in the family? You or Sharon?
Mike Leach: Sharon by far except for gravy. Which I dominate.

Bob (Spokane): How pleased are you with the development of the players both physically and mentally in your first year of coaching at WSU?
Mike Leach: Bob, that's something you're never fully satisfied with because you're always a work in progress. I'm impressed by the efforts of our players so far this off-season.
Moderator: Time for one more question.

Bill (Liberty Lake): Coach, when is your book about Geronimo due to be published?
Mike Leach: Don't have an exact date yet. Stay tuned.
Moderator: Okay, that's all the time we have. Coach thanks for joining us.
Mike Leach: What makes football great is the opportunity to share it with your school and your fans. Me and my coaches and team are proud to be a part of Washington State University.

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