Washington State athletic director Bill Moos expressed confidence a $61 million football operations building will be approved by WSU’s Board of Regents on Friday.
“I’m hopeful the regents will give us their approval,” Moos said. “I feel good about the conversations that we’ve had over the course of the past year.
“I think they’re fully up to date on the design and the cost aspect of it, and also with the proposed funding model, so I think we’re in good shape.”
Moos said he has heard nothing from regents regarding WSU’s 2-8 football record under first-year coach Mike Leach or the recent controversy revolving around disgruntled former wide receiver Marquess Wilson.
“I haven’t had any conversations with the regents on anything other than the proposed operations building,” Moos said.
WSU’s first-ever football operations building would rise four stories above the west end of Martin Stadium, and there would be a basement floor. The 79,000-square-foot project would include a weight room, coaches offices, training room, equipment room and other football-only facilities that would free up space in the Bohler Athletic Complex for use by other WSU athletes as well as athletic department personnel.
Moos said the Cougars plan to secure $46 million in bonds to supplement $15 million left over from the $80 million in bonds that were obtained for the premium seats and press box that were completed on the south side of Martin Stadium this year. Increased television revenue helps WSU pay back the debt, Moos said.
Moos said the new building would be completed in the summer of 2014. The scoreboard and video board would move to the east end of the stadium.
Leach said senior Jeff Tuel will make his fourth straight start at quarterback Saturday at Arizona State (12:30 p.m., Pac-12 Network). Former starter Connor Halliday replaced the injured Tuel late in the first quarter last Saturday and threw five touchdown passes (one shy of a school record) in a 44-36 loss to then-No. 17 UCLA. ... Tuel holds the career pass-completion-percentage record at WSU (61.6), and he’s slightly ahead of the single-season record of 64.5 percent, set by Timm Rosenbach in 1988. Halliday’s 12 interceptions rank second in the Pac-12, one back of USC’s Matt Barkley. ... The Cougars need one pass completion and four pass attempts to break school records of 309 completions and 525 pass attempts in one season. WSU leads the nation in pass attempts – and ranks last in rushing attempts – per game, counting a nation-leading 46 sacks. ... A few hundred tickets are still available for the Apple Cup with Washington on Nov. 23 in Pullman (12:30 p.m., Ch. 13).