Friday, December 21, 2007


Economic Outlook

With the help of an Eastern professor, the Journal of Business reviews 2007 and looks ahead to '08.

Journal of Business

Thursday, December 20, 2007


Stuckey Update

Quick update on Rodney Stuckey, the former EWU basketball player chosen in the first round of the NBA draft by the Detroit Pistons last June.

Seattle Times

Tuesday, December 18, 2007



To EWU's Mike Allen. The former associate athletic director and the new director of corporate and foundation relations at Eastern has been appointed to the Spokane City Council.
Great to see one of our own, and a truly nice guy, in such a high profile community position.

Monday, December 17, 2007


Community Indicators

Here's a link to an editorial in the Wenatchee World regarding a presentation by Patrick Jones, who heads up Eastern's Institute for Public Policy and Economic Analysis. Patrick has been reaching out to many communities around the region and the Community Indicators initiative is starting to get a lot of attention.

Wenatchee World

Wednesday, December 12, 2007



It is now official, Eastern's football coach is heading south to his Alma mater, WSU, to take over that football program.
Paul Wulff spent 15 years at Eastern, the last 8 as head coach. In this day and age of job hopping and money that we often see in collegiate sports, his dedication and service to Eastern was very much appreciated. We respectfully say congratulations on moving to the next step, which is only a few wheat fields and a rest stop away (OK, it's really 70 miles to Pullman).
What now? Read Steve Bergum's take from the Spokesman.

Mixed reactions follow Wulff's EWU departure
Eagles players respond to coach's exit
Steve Bergum
Staff writer
December 12, 2007

Reactions from Eastern Washington University football players ranged from frustration to unveiled anger on Tuesday as they struggled to deal with the loss of their head coach and several of his key assistants.

"I'm from Pullman. You always seem to get whispers of what going on down there, so I wasn't all that surprised," sophomore linebacker J.C. Sherritt said after learning Paul Wulff was ending his 15-year stay at EWU to take over the football program at his alma mater, Washington State.

"When you get involved in college football, you realize it's part of the business for coaches to keep moving and keep moving up. It's hard to see all these coaches go after the year we had – and with all we have coming back – but we all understand it."

Wulff, 40, was introduced as Washington State's coach during a Tuesday press conference in Pullman. Sources close the EWU program said he will take at least five of his current assistants with him to WSU.

While most of Eastern's returning players joined the school's administration in celebrating Wulff's new appointment, sophomore linebacker Makai Borden admitted to being angered by the move and its timing – coming, as it did, on the heels of the Eagles' wildly successful 9-4 season that included a third postseason playoff berth in four years.

"No mater how much we want to think it's not a business and it's not about money, it kind of is," he said. "I know he's got to be concerned with the well-being of his family, so that aspect makes sense. But in the same breath, to be honest with you, I'm upset.

"I feel like we didn't deserve this. I think this is bad timing. We go from 3-8 to 9-4 and then, poof, everything – and I mean everything – is gone, and that's frustrating."

Borden pointed to the abundance of young, talented players on the Eagles roster, including sophomore quarterback Matt Nichols, the Big Sky Conference Offensive Player of the Year, and sophomore receivers Brynsen Brown, Tony Davis and Aaron Boyce.

"We all have two more years to go and we had nothing but up, nothing but high expectations – and we still do," he explained. "But it's always hard with a new staff, because you never know what to expect. The chemistry may be different. Who knows?"

Several of Borden's teammates insisted, however, that the strong leadership and sense of togetherness that were staples of this year's team will carry them through this coaching change, as well.

"I'm a little disappointed because Coach Wulff is a good coach and he got us to where we needed to be this year," junior fullback Alexis Alexander said. "But at the same time, I don't feel like the program is going to fall apart, because I feel it rides on the shoulders of the players, and we're all still going to be here for each other.

"This year we realized we had a great team, and we have most all the team coming back, so we feel like we're going to have an even better year next year, no matter who's the coach."

Boyce admitted to also being disappointed in Wulff's decision to leave and take most of his staff with him.

"But you can't really hold any grudges or anything," he added. "You've just got to be happy for them. Obviously, those coaches were a big part of it, but the thing that is so unique about our team is that we're a really tight-knit group, and whoever ends up coaching us, the way we are with each is not going to change.

"This is going to be like a little hiccup."

First-year Eastern athletic director Bill Chaves was tending to family matters back in Texas when word of Wulff's impending departure first surfaced on Monday. He flew back to campus on Tuesday and was scheduled to join Wulff in addressing the team during a meeting late Tuesday evening.

In a statement released through EWU's sports information department, Chaves said he plans to move as quickly as possible to hire a new coach but added he wanted to spend a day "celebrating" Paul Wulff before starting the search process.

"He has done a fantastic job over the past 15 years at Eastern, and I know this decision was extremely difficult for him," Chaves said. "But today is a day for Paul and his family to celebrate, and for us to celebrate with him."

In his released statement, Chaves said no timetable or list of candidates will be released to the public during the search, and added he will not be available for additional comment until the new head coach is in place.

"We will methodically assess a number of candidates with the intention of hiring the best fit for Eastern football," he concluded.

Among the names being mentioned as possible successors to Wulff are those of former Eagles quarterback Jim McElwain, who is the offensive coordinator at Fresno State, and former EWU offensive coordinator Beau Baldwin, who is the head coach at Central Washington University.

Neither could be reached for comment, although Baldwin told the Yakima Herald, "at this point I have no intention of leaving Central."

One person who did express an interest in EWU's coaching vacancy was Idaho assistant Luther Carr, another former Eagles player, who coached at Seattle's Garfield High School and spent several season's as an assistant at Montana, where he extensively recruited the state of Washington.

Carr, who also helped coach football camps at Eastern from 1993-2001, said he has not been contacted by anyone from his alma mater.

"But I want the job, no doubt about it," he said. "I have great relations with high school coaches all over the state, and feel I'm ready to take that next step and become a college head coach."


Campus Safety

This, as it should, continues to be an important issue since V-Tech. Now, Washington's Governor is planning to ask the Legislature for funding to help campuses become safer.
At Eastern, we ere the first to go to a text messaging system (e2Campus Alert) after the the V-Tech incident...and other programs are in the works.
Here's the Governor's plan, as outlined by her communications staff:

Gov. Gregoire targets campus safety in her 2008 supplemental budget

$14.3 million in targeted investments would benefit state's colleges,

OLYMPIA - Gov. Chris Gregoire today proposed investing $14.3 million to
improve the safety of students, faculty and staff on the state's college
and university campuses.

"One thing parents shouldn't have to worry about is the safety of their
children while they attend college," Gov. Gregoire said. "But in the
past year, we have been reminded that our campuses are not immune from
violence." She noted the mass shooting at Virginia Tech University last
April, and the shooting death the same month of a University of
Washington employee by a stalking ex-boyfriend.

The governor's 2008 supplemental budget proposal will include $14.3
million for instant warning systems on campuses, community notification
systems, assistance for first responders, redundant communication
systems and access-control and shutdown mechanisms.

As part of her initiative on campus safety, Gov. Gregoire also will
introduce legislation to direct each state college and university to
update its campus plans for emergency preparedness and response
procedures and provide this information to students, faculty and staff.

Gov. Gregoire will release her full supplemental budget proposal Dec.

Earlier this year, the governor asked each state college and university
to review its resources and emergency plans, and to identify weaknesses
in its ability to prevent or respond to campus emergencies.

"There is no one-size-fits-all response to campus safety. Each campus
has different physical characteristics and safety concerns," she said.
"However, several consistent themes emerged from the state and national
reviews of campus safety. My budget will focus on those areas."

The governor's supplemental budget proposal includes:

* $8 million for instant warning systems. The governor's
investments will ensure that all state college and university campuses
have updated and reliable warning systems.

* $2.85 million for community notification. The governor's
investments will help improve systems at the UW, The Evergreen State
College, Western Washington University, and the community and technical
colleges so that students and staff can get warnings via e-mail, text
messaging and web alerts.

* $2.2 million for facility mapping and security cameras for
first responders. Community and technical colleges, and The Evergreen
State College, will complete full facilities mapping, giving responders
detailed maps of each floor in each building on campus. In addition,
Eastern Washington University will purchase security cameras that
transmit pictures wireless to monitors in campus police vehicles.

* $395,000 for redundant communications. The governor's
investments will enable the UW and WSU to install outdoor alarms and
speakers to direct students to safety and allow for the orderly movement
of people off campus or back to the classroom.

* $829,000 for access control and shutdown. The Evergreen State
College will upgrade its network to allow for the centralized,
classroom-by-classroom lockdown on campus. WSU will install key-card
access control at each door in selected buildings. The UW will enable
emergency ventilation shut-off for each building.

Friday, December 07, 2007


Never Too Early

Yes, the holidays are on the minds of many...but we offer this early preview of the 2008 Legislative session in Olympia, including information on EWU.

Journal of Business


Football Wrap

Story from the Spokesman wrapping up the successful year and looking ahead to the next.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Eastern expects electrifying future
Offensive line remains concern

Steve Bergum
Staff writer
December 7, 2007

Paul Wulff could have easily tried to temper expectations for his Eastern Washington University football program by simply pointing to his offensive line and the graduation losses it will suffer come spring.

But Eastern's eighth-year head coach is too honest to do that, insisting, instead, that he sees nothing but brighter days ahead for the Eagles, who finished a surprising 9-4 this fall and advanced to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision playoffs before losing to Appalachian State 38-35 last Saturday in Boone, N.C.

"Those seniors were, obviously, the heart and soul of our offense this year, particularly in our run down the stretch," Wulff said of Matt Alfred, Rocky Hanni, Chris Carlsen and Zach Wasielewski, who played their final game in an Eastern jersey last weekend. "They were a very intelligent group that was committed to the team and doing everything right all the time.

"There was a phenomenal sense of togetherness with those seniors, and they will be missed. But we feel like we have some very, very talented young players who are capable of stepping into their shoes and helping make us an even better football team."

For next year and beyond, it would seem.

"I was very proud of how our kids grew up this year," Wulff said, referring to the way his Eagles bounced back from last year's disappointing 3-8 finish. "We just developed into a nice, very competitive and hard-playing football team, and I don't see any reason why that's going to change. I feel like this team is on the brink of having an opportunity to win a couple of (Big Sky) conference titles and truly compete for a national championship.

"I think our program is in as good a shape as it has ever, ever been."

It's difficult to argue with Wulff's assessment.

Despite the losses up front, Eastern's offense returns five full-time starters, including record-setting sophomore quarterback Matt Nichols and four of his top five receivers. Nichols, who threw for 3,744 yards and set single-season school records for completions (280) and touchdown passes (34), was named the Big Sky Conference's offensive player of the year. His favorite target, sophomore Aaron Boyce, was also a first-team all-conference pick after hauling in 85 passes for 1,308 yards and 10 touchdowns.

The Eagles also return leading rusher Dale Morris, a junior, who ran for 930 yards and 12 touchdowns.

The major concern for next year, however, remains the offensive line. But Wulff is quick to point out that junior Charlie Wulff, his nephew, started the last eight games at center this fall and two of his young linemen, sophomore Chris Thomas and redshirt freshman Brice Leahy, also have starting experience.

Junior Julian Stewart, the projected starter at left tackle coming out of spring practice, is expected to return next fall after missing the 2007 because of academic issues. Chris Powers, a freshman defensive lineman who redshirted this year, is expected to move to the O-line.

Wulff said he is also high on the potential of sophomores Sean Rock and John Rice and freshmen Clint Moquist and Joe Beitinger.

"So the pieces are there for us to be very good in the offensive line for quite a while," Wulff said.

The Eagles should be solid on the defensive front, where they return all four starting down linemen – including first-team all-Big Sky pick Greg Peach, who recorded a team-high 11 sacks as a junior this fall – and linebacker Makai Borden.

The biggest graduation hits will come in the secondary, where seniors Bryan Jarrett, Anthony Dotson and Ira Jarmon will be lost. But Wulff said the school is petitioning for a sixth year of eligibility for senior free safety Gregor Smith, who missed last season and most of 2006 with shoulder problems, and should benefit greatly from the return of sophomore Jesse Hoffman and freshman Ethen Robinson, who also suffered season-ending injuries early this fall.

Junior Ryan Kelley and sophomore Lonnie Hosley both started at least five games at right cornerback, and sophomore Kevin Hatch was a solid performer in place of Smith at free safety, where he was involved in 34 tackles and came up with a team-best four interceptions.

Junior Terry Mixon, a transfer from Washington State who was plagued by a bad hamstring most of the season, is expected to return and play a key role in EWU's secondary.

"Clearly, the off-season will give him a great opportunity to get healthy, get in our off-season weight program and get himself fit," Wulff said of Mixon, who was a junior college all-American at Grossmont (Calif.) Community College before signing with WSU.

The Eagles also return place-kicker Felipe Marcias, punter Fritz Brayton and long snapper Mark Lathim, along with kickoff return specialist Nicholas Ramos.

"Our seniors provided great leadership all season long, no question," Wulff said. "But we had some young kids develop great leadership skills, too.

"I don't see any reason why next year's team won't be projected to be one of the top teams in the conference, and one of the top teams in the country, as well."

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?