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August 22, 2010

The Cougar Lounge - The Tail Whip


"We have the size to compete with those teams, so it's going to be pretty close."

- Wazzu head volleyball coach Andrew Palileo, assessing the chances of his Cougars in the Pac-10 this year.




"I thought our defense was pretty good, there was a few missed tackles out there."

- Wazzu head football coach Paul Wulff after the Cougar offense mostly prevailed in the second scrimmage of the 2010 fall practice session.




"Everything."

- USA head men's hoop coach Mike Krzyzewski describing - in painstaking detail - what the Americans need to work on to improve their chances at claiming the world championship, after a lackluster 77-61 exhibition win over Lithuania.




"When we were all young, we accidentally killed someone. Then we made a pact that we would never reveal it. Now, we're sort of confessing through our art."

- Member of the popular comedy troupe, Kids in the Hall, Scott Thompson, explaining why they are suddenly coming forth and performing an eight-episode miniseries entitled Death Comes To Town on the IFC cable channel.








The Lounge is chock full of commiseration this week. The clientele is commiserating with the 21st-ranked Wazzu soccer team, who lost their season opener in a closely fought battle royale with sixth-ranked Florida State while on the Wazzu football team the offense is commiserating with the defense since each of them has lost a scrimmage and therefore, been touched by the suffering of a loss. The clientele is also commiserating with the school itself after they lost a few places in the latest U.S. News and World Report college rankings for 2011.


But there will be plenty of time for that later on, right now, let us talk about the coolness that is Nike - and Bernard Lagat. Yes, you heard the Lounge correctly, every once in awhile [scientists have estimated the frequency to be once every kajillion years, Kenneth], Nike actually does something cool, and when that happens, the Lounge gracefully rises above petty sniping and acknowledges that occurrence. In this case, Nike made some special track spikes - as they usually do in their quest for attention [wait…no petty sniping…strike that and replace with "their quest for shoemaking excellence"] - for legendary Wazzu distance runner, multi-Olympic medalist and now current American 5000K record-holder, Bernard Lagat for last year's world championships. The spikes were cool enough as they were in red, white and blue, then Lagat and Nike added a special touch to Bernard's boots - images of his two kids on the tongues of each shoe. We checked and it has been confirmed - it does not get much cooler than that.

We would like to say that the reason for the Lounge's delay in finding out and revealing this information would be because we do not own either a Facebook, Twitter or YouTube [or as we like to call them FaceTwitTube] account to expose our every genius thoughts as well as occasions of armpit scratching combined with nose-picking moments to the world. But alas, we cannot. We can only say that we were in Boise one day and when we found out about Bernard's boots, we immediately set about to twitting and tweeting wildly about it until we discovered that Boise State head football coach Chris Petersen had forbade twittering activities along with forbidding any people who happened to be nearby his football program from breathing [a word about it to anybody], sleeping [on it until morning], dressing in black clothing or loitering at any Red Robin restaurants [a clear sign of subversive behavior]. So, none of the previous 84 words or so is true except for the part about Petersen making his part of Boise a No Twitter Zone and maybe the Red Robin stuff.

The U.S. News and World Report recently came out with their 2011 college rankings and there was good news and bad news. First, the good news. All Pac-10 schools [and soon-to-be Pac-12 schools] were in the Top 150 of the national university rankings. Now, the bad news - only four of those schools were in the Top 25 and all four schools were in California - meaning there was not quite the academic geographical balance achieved for the conference. Also, more bad news for Washington State University as they dropped a few places from last year's ranking and allowed Oregon to move into a tie with them for sixth place in the conference [or seventh when Colorado joins] - but the endowment still looks good at $620 million

Everybody - the Florida State soccer team, Nike, Bernard Lagat, Chris Petersen, U.S. News and World Report - knows that Cougar Gold cheese is among the best cheeses in the land, which is why they need to be included on the Dairy Dial so that the dial can be taken seriously [as much as a dairy dial can be taken seriously]. We feel strongly that any can of Cougar Gold would whip the curds out of any aged green peppercorn goat cheese any day of any week of any month of any year.

"That was not too bad for the first match of the year," says Horst P. Horst, Lounge Aficionado, of the 21st-ranked Wazzu soccer team's 1-0 loss to sixth-ranked Florida State in their season opener.

Yes, not too bad, Horst, but also an opportunity lost for Wazzu. Florida State came all the way across the country and was without their two star players in Jessica Price and Tiffany McCarty and the Cougars could not take advantage of that scenario to get the win and now must - no two ways about it - defeat Utah in today's match to salvage the weekend. If Wazzu takes care of business today and comes out of the weekend with a 1-1 record, it may not hurt them too much in the big picture, but if they had come out of the weekend 2-0, it would have been a tremendous boost for a young team and head coach Matt Potter hoping to make a third consecutive trip to the NCAA tourney. Potter was dealt a few injuries and had to start too many true freshmen to deal with a more experienced Seminole squad despite the absence of their two top stars. Had Potter had a few more healthy, experienced athletes available to him, it is entirely plausible the Cougars could have got the victory or, at worst, forged no worse than a tie. But now it is time to move on and they will have to defeat Utah [who lost to Gonzaga in their season opener and will not be rolling over] today and prepare for next week against Long Beach State and Texas A&M [who lost, 3-0, to North Carolina, in their opener].

"Well, that didn't solve much," says Miss Fortune about the Cougars' second football scrimmage of the 2010 fall practice session.

Time to flip a coin Miss F. With the defense winning one week and the offense winning another, no clarity was established on the potential of the Cougar football team for the upcoming 2010 season. The questions remain - was the defense good in the first week because the offense was poor or was the offense good in the second week because the defense was poor? Or was it a little bit of both? Or do they just need more practice time to establish more consistency from each unit? Until the units sustain that consistency, the Lounge clientele consensus is that it is impossible to project who will or will not play well when the season opener rolls around in two weeks against the Oklahoma State Cowboys. There is the assumption, of course, that quarterback Jeff Tuel, defensive lineman Travis Long and punter Reid Forrest will perform, but beyond that is a long and wide wheat field of questions - unless this week's scrimmage answers any of them.


Since there is no denying that Cougar Gold cheese is currently among the best in the land, it is only fitting that even the aged Cougar Gold is pretty damn good. You know something is good when it was made almost 23 years ago and it still kicks the crap out of aged green peppercorn goat cheese.

Meanwhile, the Lounge Scientists can sympathize with the only child. Many times their research has been accused of being the figment of their imaginations which they discuss only with their cadre of imaginary friends. But now comes a study that supports their contention that they were not making up imaginary friends, just working on the social skills they would need later in life. A recent study found that kids who have siblings do not necessarily make more friends than kids who are only children and tend to fare well in their professional lives.

"Only children move up quickly in their professions. It's unlikely they would do that if they didn't interact with their peers," says Lounge Scientist #1, Rebecca Hegar, a scientist at the University of Texas-Arlington who, reputedly, had an imaginary friend named Fluffy.

In a side note, scientists have also said that the accumulation of imaginary friends over the years can help when it comes times to send out party invitations and do yard work.




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