Marshall Lobbestael replaces Kevin Lopina at quarterback for WSU
Cougars change starters, also say they'll ready freshman Jeff Tuel to play.
Seattle Times staff reporter
Washington State's struggling football program is making a change at quarterback — in fact, two of them.
Cougars coach Paul Wulff said Tuesday morning that third-year sophomore Marshall Lobbestael of Oak Harbor will start Saturday's game in Pullman against Southern Methodist, and true freshman Jeff Tuel — seen by the coaches as the future at that position — will be readied to play.
Wulff said Tuel would play this season, adding, "He's got a very bright future. The sooner we get him an opportunity to start playing, he'll do some good things.
"He's shown it in practice. He's picked up our offense very quickly and he's shown the maturity. At the same time, we don't want to do too much too quick."
Wulff acknowledged that "We don't have a solidified starting quarterback. We're trying to find one."
The decisions seem to signal a youth movement for the Cougars, who have been widely outplayed in their first two games. Kevin Lopina, the fifth-year senior who has been starting, has played respectably, completing 58 percent of his passes with a touchdown and two interceptions and a rating of 111.65.
"Kevin Lopina's still in the mix as well," Wulff said.
Lobbestael, coming off a knee injury from last season, has gotten some series in both losses, but has tended to play in obvious passing situations when the Cougars have trailed badly. He is 10 of 19 with an interception for 114 yards and a 92.5 rating.
Bud Withers: 206-464-8281 or email@example.com
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