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Football

Winter 2017

Steve Gleason ’00

Former Cougar football and NFL standout Steve Gleason ’00, whose battle with ALS has become an international symbol of perseverance and determination, has been named the Regents’ Distinguished Alumnus for 2017.

“Steve Gleason epitomizes the essence of ‘Cougar Spirit,’” said Washington State University President Kirk Schulz at the August 10 ceremony. “His passion to persevere and succeed despite life’s challenges has inspired thousands, not only in the United States, but around the world.”

Gleason helped take WSU to the Rose Bowl in 1997 and in 2006 had a punt-blocking dive for the New Orleans Saints that rallied the hurricane-ravaged city’s down-but-not-out spirit. Five … » More …

Jason Gesser
Winter 2014

The right color back on

Ask Jason Gesser ’02 about the finest decision he’s made and his answer is as pinpoint as each of the 70 career touchdown passes he threw at Washington State.

“Coming to Washington State was the perfect and best decision I made in my life,” he says. “Besides marrying my wife,” Gesser is quick to add, with a laugh. He married his college girlfriend Kali Surplus ’02, a former WSU volleyball player, and the couple has three children.

In his new role as the assistant director of development with the Cougar Athletic Fund, the fundraising arm of the Washington State University Athletic Department, his … » More …

WSU football building
Fall 2014

Cougar football—A new home at the core of campus

Mike Leach walks into the new Cougar Football Complex towering between the west end zone of Martin Stadium and Rogers Practice Field for a final tour in May before the program moves in. Looking up, the head coach says, “Where did you get the four-story football player?”

The tour’s leader, WSU Athletic Director Bill Moos ’73, laughs. A huge image of a Cougar football player stretches from the bottom of the open staircase to the top level of the new building. The figure will be even more visible when it’s lit up at night, he says.

It’s a grand entrance for the newest athletic building, … » More …

WSU football reunion
Spring 2014

After the games

Some students finish school and never take the time to look back. The same goes, perhaps even more so, for student athletes, who often return to their home states or get caught up in either pursuing pro careers or lives outside of sports.

This year, though, one football player made a special effort to reconnect athletes whose names were once synonymous with WSU.

Wanting to give back to the school that gave him a college career, Derek Sparks ’95 approached the WSU Athletic Department and asked if he could be of use in some way. Someone tossed out the idea of his reaching out to … » More …

girl trying 3D4U
Spring 2013

Replays for all

The idea of having control of his view of a sporting event struck Sankar “Jay” Jayaram in 2009 while he was watching a Seahawks game on TV and wishing he was in the stands.

“I had never been to a Seahawks game and I wished I could put on a 3D headset and be in the stadium,” says the Washington State University mechanical engineering and computer science professor.

Fortunately Jayaram, an expert in virtual reality modeling, had been working for several years on an immersive 3D experience for use on exercise machines. His startup firm 3D-4U Solutions holds patents on the technology which creates 180- or … » More …

Apple Cup 2012
Spring 2013

One happy ending

It was the biggest comeback in Apple Cup history. The Cougs were down by 18 points going into the fourth quarter last November. The team dug deep, persevered, and achieved a 31-28 victory in overtime, behind the running of senior Carl Winston III, and the play of every defensive and offensive WSU player on the field. Jubilant Cougar fans poured onto the field after the win to celebrate with Coach Mike Leach and the team.

Read a full recap of the 2012 Apple Cup and see more photos at the WSU Athletics website.

Photos by Shelly Hanks. ©2013 Washington State University

» More …

Bob Robertson
Winter 2012

That voice

It’s 8:00 a.m., Saturday, September 8, when Bob Robertson arrives at Martin Stadium. Four hours from now, kickoff between the Washington State Cougars and Eastern Washington University will occur in the first game at the newly renovated stadium.

And when kickoff does happen, Robertson’s signature voice will carry the action to Cougar football fans for the 510th time.

It’s a voice Cougars everywhere connect with Washington State football—even when at a rival school.

“I must say when it worked, and when I was in Portland and the Cougars were playing, I’d get Bob Robertson on the radio,” says Washington State Director of Athletics Bill Moos … » More …