Cougars try to end Huskies bowl hopes in Apple Cup

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The future is also on the minds of many in Pullman.

Wulff’s status beyond Saturday is tenuous at best. Washington State athletic director Bill Moos has gone silent on the topic, even with the Cougars coming off their first Pac-10 victory in nearly two years when they beat Oregon State 31-14 on Nov. 13.

The Cougars have shown progress in Wulff’s third season.

But it’s difficult to ignore Wulff’s 5-31 record.

“From where we started, I think we have come a long, long ways,” Wulff said. “When you compare the body of our team’s work last year and this year, I don’t know if there is a team that improved more that us in the Pac-10.”

If the Cougars are going to ruin the Huskies’ postseason hopes, it’ll largely rest on quarterback Jeff Tuel. The sophomore has thrown for 2,482 yards and 15 touchdowns, but it was his running that was the key in the upset of Oregon State. While Tuel threw for 157 yards and a score against the Beavers, he also rushed for a team-high 79 yards.

Tuel will be trying to solve a suddenly stout Washington defense that’s gone seven quarters without giving up a touchdown. The play of the Huskies defense allowed Locker enough time to engineer one final drive last week at California that resulted in Chris Polk’s 1-yard touchdown run on the final play of the game for a 16-13 win that finally brought a little relevance back to the Apple Cup.

Now, will Washington finish its late-season charge, or will the Cougars successfully play spoiler?

“You’ve got to treat it like a playoff game where you lose, you’re done,” Locker said. “That’s kind of the reality of it now.”

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