FROM KANSAS CITY — We're about 20 minutes from tip-off of WSU's CBE Classic consolation game against Texas A&M, which the Cougars will play without sophomore guard DaVonte Lacy. The left knee injury that knocked Lacy out of last night's loss to Kansas will also keep him out of this one, and he'll be evaluated further when the team returns to Pullman tomorrow. Dexter Kernich-Drew is likely to start in Lacy's place. … WSU's loss to Kansas last night wasn't pretty, to be sure. But the team the Cougars face tonight is coming off a bad loss, too, one in which it struggled quite a bit offensively. The Aggies made a fair percentage of shots (44.2 percent from the field and 3-7 from 3-point range) but turned the ball over 19 times. Their frontcourt size — 6-foot-9 Kourtney Roberson and 6-foot-9 Ray Turner are probable starters — is a little more manageable, too. … WSU fans might recognize the name of Elston Turner, a starting Texas A&M guard who played two seasons at Washington before transferring. … This is what the pundits like to call a gut-check game for WSU. That's a cliche, yes. But this bit of early-season adversity — coming off an embarrassing loss, without DaVonte Lacy — could show a lot about WSU's character. And about its offense. The Cougars couldn't make shots last night. But even Kansas coach Bill Self admitted that some of that was more about WSU simply missing than it was KU playing great defense. Those buckets must go down tonight for WSU to have a chance. … As mentioned earlier, A&M's size shouldn't be quite as bothersome. Maybe that means a different defensive approach.
We'll be back after the game.