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WSU football

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The University of Washington and Washington State football teams have one more weekend before they face each other in the annual Apple Cup game.

This year, it's being played at Husky Stadium in Seattle on Friday, Nov. 29, at 1 p.m. As KNKX sports commentator Art Thiel told Morning Edition host Kirsten Kendrick: what a difference a year makes!

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The first half of the college football season didn't exactly go as planned for University of Washington and Washington State fans. KNKX sports commentator Art Thiel talked with Morning Edition host Kirsten Kendrick about some setbacks for both teams.

Ted S. Warren, FILE / AP Photo

The University of Washington and Washington State University football teams begin their 2019 seasons on Saturday. The Huskies host Eastern Washington University in Seattle at noon, and the Cougars host New Mexico State in Pullman at 7 p.m. KNKX sports commentator Art Thiel about how both teams look this year.

David Zalubowski / AP Photo

The Washington State Cougars and Washington Huskies are both expected to win their football games this weekend against Arizona and Oregon State, respectively. The Cougars and Huskies are in first and second place in the Pac-12's North Division.

That means a lot is riding on next week's Apple Cup matchup between the two teams. It's the topic of this week's conversation between KNKX sports commentator Art Thiel and Morning Edition host Kirsten Kendrick.

Young Kwak / AP Photo

Football and facial hair. That's the topic of this week's conversation between KNKX sports commentator Art Thiel and Morning Edition host Kirsten Kendrick.

The 6-3 Washington Huskies host Stanford Saturday night in Seattle. And the 7-1 Washington State Cougars host Cal Saturday night in Pullman, led by star quarterback Gardner Minshew and his much talked-about mustache.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

There are more questions than answers in the news this week that Washington State University backup quarterback Tyler Hilinski had a degenerative brain disease known as CTE (Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy). He committed suicide in January.

Hilinski's death, as well as his physical and mental state before he killed himself, are the topic of this week’s conversation between KNKX sports commentator Art Thiel and 88-5’s Kirsten Kendrick.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

Washington State University football coach Mike Leach caused a firestorm on social media this week. He tweeted out a doctored video of a speech by former president Barack Obama. His action and the response by the university are not sitting well with KNKX sports commentator Art Thiel. Art talked with KNKX Morning Edition host Kirsten Kendrick.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The University of Washington and Washington State football teams are gearing up to play in bowl games next week. The Cougars take on Michigan State in the Holiday Bowl on Dec. 28 in San Diego. And the Huskies play Penn State in the Fiesta Bowl on Dec. 30 in Glendale, Arizona.

KNKX sports commentator Art Thiel talked with KNKX Morning Edition host Kirsten Kendrick about which team has more at stake.

Ted S. Warren / AP File Photo

We’re almost to the halfway point for college football. Both teams in Washington are undefeated and highly ranked. A lot of fans are already looking ahead to this year’s Apple Cup, when the Washington Huskies host the Washington State Cougars.

KNKX sports commentator Art Thiel talked about how both teams stack up.

Ryan Kang / AP Photo

The Washington State Cougars are the surprise team of the Pac-12 this season. They're already bowl bound while their rivals, the Washington Huskies, are still trying to get to that point.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel explains why both teams are where they are right now.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

A big college football rivalry plays out Saturday night in Seattle, when the Washington Huskies take on the Oregon Ducks at Alaska Airlines Field at Husky Stadium. The Ducks are coming off an upset loss to Washington State last weekend.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says that was just one of the big events that put the Pac-12 conference in the national spotlight this past week.

David Zalubowski / AP Photo

It hasn’t been a good week for the University of Washington or Washington State University football teams. They both lost key players, and for different reasons.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says the Huskies dismissed a player who had a reputation as a troublemaker.

An investigation by the Pac-12 athletic conference released Tuesday finds no evidence that Washington State University football coaches physically or mentally abused players. WSU's president requested the outside probe. He did so after an athlete who quit and the parent of another former player alleged the coaching staff was "out of control."

Dean Hare / AP Photo

Washington State University's athletic department and the Pac-12 are each investigating claims of abuse by first-year head football coach Mike Leach. The often controversial coach denies the claims being leveled by former star receiver Marquess Wilson, who quit the team.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says, no matter who's right in this case, it sheds light on the long-overlooked issue of players' rights - or lack of them - in college sports.

A Pac-12 spokesman said the athletic conference does not have a timeline for completing a review of the WSU football program. Over the weekend, university president Elson Floyd asked for outside help to investigate claims by a player of abusive behavior by the coaching staff. Meanwhile, a sports ethics expert is praising the player for speaking out. Correspondent Tom Banse reports.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

There's not a lot to cheer about this season if you're a college football fan in Washington.

Both the University of Washington and Washington State have been struggling. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says nowhere is that more evident than at the position of quarterback.

Three million dollars has been donated to the football stadium project at Washington State University. It is the largest single gift in the history of Cougar athletics.

WSU Athletic Director Bill Moos called the donation significant because, he says, it means the university can be competitive with the best collegiate athletic programs in the nation.

The football stadium project was approved by the university's Board of Regents on November 18th. The total cost of the stadium project is $80 million.

Ross D. Franklin / AP Photo

He coached Texas Tech to 10 bowl games in 10 years. That's the winning record that Mike Leach brings to Washington State University as the new head football coach.

But KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says he also comes with controversy.

Eric Gay / AP Photo

Just a day after firing Paul Wulff, who had the job for four years, Washington State University has hired Mike Leach to be its new head football coach.

Leach is the former coach of Texas Tech University. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says he's an offensive wizard who's had his share of controversy.

Dean Hare / AP Photo

Washington State University is enjoying the best start to its football season since 2006. The Cougars are 3-1 heading into Saturday's game at UCLA. And they're doing it with their backup quarterback.