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Pac-12 Confidential

Bud Withers offers an inside look at the Pac-12 Conference and the national college scene.

September 3, 2011 at 1:53 PM

A curveball for the Cougars, out of the gate

What a strange way for Washington State to begin the 2011 football season. Jeff Tuel, the junior quarterback poised to have a big season, has a stomach virus and may not play against Idaho State.

Tuel didn’t take part in pregame warmups. He came out for the coin toss and threw briefly, but Marshall Lobbestael, the senior from Oak Harbor, started the game after WSU won the flip and took the ball.

Tough blow for a guy who has become a leader on the team and has suffered a real physical beating the past two years behind an offensive line that hasn’t protected him.

In his absence, Lobbestael and Connor Halliday figure to get action. They’ve dueled throughout camp, and at the end of it, WSU coach Paul Wulff didn’t designated either as the No. 2 quarterback. Halliday is a highly regarded redshirt freshman from Spokane.

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