Rival coach Don James of the University of Washington once called himself a 2,000-word underdog to Jim Walden. James may have been underestimating the opinionated Walden, even at those lopsided odds. During an association with the Washington State football program that started in 1977, Jim Walden established a foundation of competitive expectations that helped spur the success of contemporary Cougar teams. Waldens 1981 Cougars broke a 51-year bowl drought, and with victories in three of his last five Apple Cup games against Washington, Walden finally leveled the field with WSUs cross-state rivals.Waldens teams beat every opponent in the Pac-10 Conference at least once, squaring off against powerhouses USC, UCLA, and Washington despite a deficit in resources that he once described as having to fight battles every Saturday with a really short sword. He kidded and sparred with coaches like James, John Robinson, and Terry Donahue, while ticking off a few others with his outspokenness. He offered his opinions so frequently and frankly that his university president had The Walden Release printed and ready as a disclaimer for the press: The opinions of Coach Walden do not necessarily reflect the stance of the WSU administration. In Jim Waldens Tales from the Washington State Cougars Sideline, the coach, a Mississippi-born storyteller, looks at coaches from the colorful Lone Star Dietz to Bill Doba and gives readers a glimpse at the personalities of Cougar All-Americans as well as the other quirky individuals who made their way onto the WSU sidelines. Walden reveals the effective strategies and the flubs and tells what really happened on the field and in the locker rooms.