Gubrud heats up quarterback competition with performance Thursday

Graduate transfer has made his mark despite missing most of spring



Senior cornerback Marcus Strong catches the ball while participating in a drill on Tuesday at Rogers Field.

JOHN SPELLMAN, Evergreen reporter

One common theme for WSU football over the past few years is there has been a battle in the spring to decide who the starting quarterback will be.

The quarterback battle was on full display Thursday afternoon at Martin Stadium as the Cougars took the field for another spring practice.

The Cougars have two redshirt senior quarterbacks fighting it out for the starting position in Trey Tinsley and Anthony Gordon. However, graduate-transfer quarterback Gage Gubrud has started to participate in more drills each practice as he looks to compete for the starting spot.

The interesting thing is that all three players vying for the job have only one season of eligibility left, likely leading to another quarterback battle next offseason.

For the first time since transferring from Eastern Washington, Gubrud took reps with the first team offense since injuring his foot during midnight maneuvers. Even he though did not make a lot of throws, Gubrud seemed to bring a fire to the field at Martin Stadium.

Gubrud showed his accuracy and well-noted ability to scramble around the pocket to evade pressure.

“We just got to see what [Gubrud] can do,” Head Coach Mike Leach said. “The biggest thing is just to see where he is at and what he can do.”

However, Gordon and Tinsley both have been impressive in spring practice and Thursday was no different as they made some big throws to carve up the defense.

Gordon seemed to have one of his best practices of the spring as he made some nice throws to showcase why he should be the one under center for the Cougars next season.

“He looked really sharp today in both drills we did,” Leach said.

Gordon opened up his set of reps with the first team throwing a 30-yard touchdown pass to redshirt senior wide receiver Brandon Arconado. He would connect with Arconado one more time in the end zone for a 7-yard score.

Redshirt freshman wide receiver Kassidy Woods closed out Gordon’s day by catching a 5-yard touchdown to cap an impressive performance by the quarterback.

Woods is going through a transition of his own as he moves to inside receiver from his previous spot as an outside receiver.

“It’s going pretty good so far,” Woods said. “I’m enjoying it, but I’m still trying to get used to the blocking and being inside … I just try to get to better each practice and stay in the moment each day.”

Though they did not come away with any turnovers, the defense was able to do a good job of limiting the offense’s ability to move the ball as Tinsley and redshirt sophomore quarterback John Bledsoe were stymied under center.

However, Tinsley was able to throw a 5-yard touchdown on a screen pass to sophomore running back Max Borghi.

The team returns to the field on Saturday morning for their next scrimmage with the spring game looming.