Washington State Magazine

Summer 2007

Summer 2007

In This Issue...


It felt like coming home :: With Lane Rawlins, Washington State University has "become what a lot of people envisioned it could be." Even though he has plenty of ideas of what to do next, it is time to hand over the presidency. by Hannelore Sudermann

The presidents :: The fledgling Washington State Agricultural College hired and fired two presidents in two years. But then Enoch Bryan arrived, with his vision of a college of science and technology "shot through and through with the spirit of the liberal arts." Since Bryan, the succeeding presidents of Washington State University have established something of a rhythmic cycle of stirring things up and reconciliation, with lots of good drama and ideas mixed in. by Tim Steury

{ WEB EXCLUSIVE—Our Story: WSU presidents I have known (or known of) :: The secretary of Glenn Terrell and Clement French gives the lowdown on her former bosses and their predecessors. by Gen De Vleming }

Counting cougs :: Between 1995, the year before Washington banned the hunting of cougars with hounds, and 2000, the number of human-cougar encounters nearly quadrupled. Although encounters have returned to pre-ban levels in some areas, the public perception is that cougars are making a comeback—and must be stopped. But Hillary Cooley and Rob Wielgus insist that much of what we think we know about cougars is wrong. And their argument rests with the young males. by Cherie Winner

{ WEB EXCLUSIVE—Gallery: Counting Cougs :: Stalking the wild—and elusive—cougar with graduate student Hilary Cooley in northeastern Washington. A photo gallery by Robert Hubner. }

{ WEB EXCLUSIVE—Gallery: Project CAT :: In September 2006, photographer Robert Hubner joined graduate students Hilary Cooley and Ben Maletzke on a trip to capture and collar a cougar kitten, with the help of students from the Cle Elum-Roslyn schools' Project CAT. }

Biology by the numbers:: In normal times, Europe's brown bears live in a state of happy equilibrium. But under certain circumstances, things can go seriously awry, leading the males to commit what researcher Robert Wielgus calls sexually selected infanticide. Wielgus's most powerful tool against this eventuality is math. by Cherie Winner

Hops & beer :: Raising the raw ingredients for beer can be just as complex and interesting as growing grapes for wine, says Jason Perrault '97, '01. Like grapes, hops have different varieties and characteristics. Perrault, fourth-generation heir to a hops-farming legacy, runs a hops breeding program for Yakima Valley growers, helping to ensure that Washington continues to provide three-quarters of the hops grown in this country. by Hannelore Sudermann


:: World Class. Face to Face. It's not a slogan, it's a plan. President Rawlins shares some parting thoughts on the eve of his retirement.

:: Questioning the questions

:: Happy—and healthy—ever after


:: FOOD AND FORAGE: It's rhubarb pie time!

:: SPORTS: Baseball's my game

:: SPORTS: Hoop dreams


Cover: V. Lane Rawlins steps down as WSU's ninth president, having given the University a stronger sense of itself and its role in the state. Read the story. Illustration by Steve O'Brien.


Hoop dreams

by | © Washington State University

Cougar fans are still shaking themselves awake from the dream that was the 2006-07 basketball season.

The sweet reverie set in early this winter during a game against Gonzaga at Friel Court. For the first time in years, a scrappy bunch of mostly juniors and sophomores showed us that channeled energy, resiliency, and strategic coaching could add up to victory. The Washington State University win shattered a seven-game losing streak against the Zags and started a season loaded with ending streaks and broken records.

Sports analysts who predicted we'd finish at the back of the Pac-10 were forced to take a second look at Tony Bennett, the young head coach in his first year in charge. In 2003, his father, Dick Bennett, came out of retirement to rebuild WSU's basketball program. He brought along Tony, a former NBA player, to work as his assistant. Each year the Bennetts pushed the program forward, preparing us for a series of thrilling second halves and nail-biting overtimes. Now with Tony as coach, WSU has had its first winning season in more than a decade. With 26 wins, the team tied the school record set in 1941.

When they started, there were no stars, just a bunch of really solid players. When one was guarded, another stepped in to shoot the three-pointer or get the rebound. Derrick Low, Ivory Clark, Daven Harmeling, Taylor Rochestie, Kyle Weaver, Robbie Cowgill, Aaron Baynes, and others. They were regular guys on campus who in a few short weeks this winter became heroes of the Palouse. They believed the Bennett dream, and it took them all the way to the No. 2 spot in the Pac-10. Then it carried them to Sacramento, where they played the first two rounds of the NCAA Tournament, extending the magic into mid-March.

The Cougars became the talk of every sports show and the sleeper team on every bracket. The sportscasters couldn't help but notice how the players used what they learned in the first half of the game to win in the second.

The team didn't disappoint. They pounded Oral Roberts in the first round of the tournament. In the second round, they stuck with Vanderbilt into double overtime. It was a hard game to watch. In the end, they lost. And just like that, the best basketball season in a long, long time was over.

A few hours later, the players were home in Pullman asleep in their own beds. And the rest of us were wondering what to do with our Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights.

A few things are certain, though: First, after what we've seen this winter, it won't be so easy for the Cougars to sneak up on their opponents anymore. Second, since most of the players are sophomores and juniors, the same team will be back on Friel Court in October. And, third, we're all counting the days until next season.

Categories: Athletics | Tags: Basketball

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