Hello Cougar Fans and welcome to the A.D. Forum. Washington State University Director of Athletics Jim Sterk will post periodic entries on this page about topics regarding WSU Athletics.
Jan. 12, 2009
Happy New Year Cougar Fans! I hope you were able to enjoy the holiday season and 2009 brings you nothing but health and happiness. Looking back at 2008, it's hard to believe that it's been two months since the Apple Cup. If you are like me then you are still basking in the glow from our victory. Our win did more than just continue our string of success in the series; it demonstrated that, after a season of struggle and adversity, there is indeed light at the end of the tunnel.
I wish to express my gratitude for your support throughout what was undoubtedly one of the most difficult seasons in Cougar Football history. As the season progressed, I realized there was a great deal of disappointment with the results, and the manner in how they came about; yet, through it all, it was heartening to see how great the support you demonstrated was and how minimal the dissension I came across. Thank you.
I write this message to not only thank you for your unwavering support, but to reassure you that we have laid a foundation for success in the program, and we have a plan in place for the journey to build on this foundation.
Paul Wulff and his staff are tirelessly working to once again position the football program back to the heights of where it was earlier this decade. Coach Wulff has never flinched and never deviated from his plan. He has shown strength of character that embodies everything you look for in a Coug.
Progress has been made on the field, and that was demonstrated with the Apple Cup win; progress has also been made off, as evidenced by the cumulative team grade point average of 2.73 following the spring of 2008, which was the highest ever achieved by the football program. This academic success is a product of the hard work and dedication our student-athletes have demonstrated, and it is these same attributes that will reflect future success on the field of play.
Please know we are assisting Coach Wulff and his staff in rebuilding Cougar Football to a national competitive level. We are focusing on improving all aspects of the program, and much has been done already. As you have made an investment to the program with your support, we are also making a serious investment to the football program.
Examples of this include the over $27 million for Phases I and II of the stadium renovation, the new scoreboard, and the Cougar Pride monument; the addition of a hydrotherapy system, which will assist all of our student-athletes with rehabilitation from injuries and overall training, and the remodeling of the locker rooms. We are not going to stop there. We will continue to develop all of our facilities, most notably, the continuation of the stadium renovation, specifically Phase III and the implementation of premium seating atop the north stands.
Signing Day 2009 is only a few weeks away. That day will mark another step in the program's journey back to the heights of the Pacific-10 Conference and the nation. The journey will take some time, but we will reach our destination. I need you to be a part of this journey. You are very important to Cougar Football, and we especially need your help as we go through the rebuilding process.
My hope is that you continue to support our efforts and see us through this process, the right way, with Cougar Pride. Please know that your continued commitment to the Cougs is meaningful in so many ways, and it allows us to do the work that is required to provide you a championship-level product once again.
It is my personal vow to you that I, and everyone within the Athletic Department, will not take your support for granted as we continue to "work the plan" that Coach Wulff has set out before us.
I hope to see you at our various off-season events: the signing day party, the "Night with Cougar Football" events, the spring game, and at our various Cougar Club golf outings this summer. If you do see me, please come up and introduce yourself, so I can thank you personally. You deserve to be a part of every success that will come our way in the future.
In conclusion, I greatly appreciate your support and being a Cougar. I look forward to you being with us as we continue our journey.