Cougars try to learn from mistakes against USC this time around


PULLMAN, Wash. — For the first time this season it feels like the Washington State Cougars have some sort of momentum, and the storylines aren’t focused on them coming into a game.  While USC may be going through a little turmoil with its head coaching position, this is still a team that handled the Cougs comfortably just 10 months ago.

It’s been four years since USC and Washington State played in a Friday night classic. That ended with the Cougs upsetting a top five ranked Trojans team.  Less than a year ago however, the two-faced off down in Los Angeles. The Trojans rolling to a victory, but Head Coach Nick Rolovich says entering that game, mentally he’s not sure they believed they could compete.

“I know Jayden had back to back throws that were intercepted, I’ve done that in my career. I don’t know many other guys that have. For him to come back and become an improved player, an improved leader….you erase the first quarter maybe it’s a different game, but it’s not. We had to take our medicine we got to be prepared for a great team coming in here,” said Rolovich.

“Last year we was dealing with COVID and everything, I came back that Thursday, couple of other guys came back. I only had like one week of practice and COVID kind of hit me hard. So just really wasn’t all there mentally and it was just mental mistakes during the game, stuff that I know this year now. So just preparation is way easier this year,” added starting Quarterback Jayden de Laura.

The Cougs ran a more up-tempo offense against Portland State last weekend, Rolovich says they’ll probably do a bit of the same against USC, but it’s yet to be determined as to how much at this point. He went on to add it’s nice to have that ability on offense and to have it in their back pocket for the short term and long term future.

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