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Cougs Cruise Past Beavers

One game after being benched, Luke Falk tosses 6 touchdown passes on 37 of 49 passing for 396 yards as the WSU steam rolls Oregon State in their Pac-12 opener 52-23.

Luke Falk made his first start against Oregon State in 2014 and after Saturday’s win, made it 4 in a row against the Beavers.    

“I thought he played well, I though he got in a good rhythm, he looked very sharp most of the game,” Leach said regarding Luke Falk.

The Cougs started slow the first drive going 3 and out and it started to look like more of the same.  But as Falk has done the past 3 years under Leach’s system, takes a few games to get warmed up and then catches fire.  He did that in a big way on Saturday and appeared to have found two replacements for the graduated Gabe Marks.

Falk started off his touchdown spree by connecting with Tavares Martin Jr. and Isaiah Johnson-Mack to give the Cougs the early 14-2 lead.  He followed that up with 2 more touchdowns to each of them to give the Cougs a 28-9 advantage at halftime.

Ryan Nall, who has been a horn in the heel of the Cougs finished with 118 yards on 15 carries including a 45 yard td run to begin the 2nd half to pull the beavers within 12 at 28-16.  That was when both offense and defense stepped it to another level. 

On 3rd down and 22 from their own 43 yard line, Falk evaded to two tacklers and completed a pass across the middle to Martin Jr. that went for a 57 yard touchdown and WSU’s biggest pass play of the season.  Luke followed that up with a 10 yard touchdown pass to Kyle Sweet for his 6th touchdown pass on the day.  The next possession, the swarming Cougar defense on a corner blitz forced OSU quarterback Jake Luton to fumble and Frankie Luvu returned it 40 yards to put the Cougs up 49-16 in the 4th.

A scary moment in the 4th, Jake Luton was hit hard on a quarterback keeper and was taken off in a stretcher after 10 minutes of stoppage time.  Luton was released from a Spokane hospital within hours, so a good sign, but it hasn’t been released whether he will play next week or not. 

Tavares Martin Jr. ended the game with 10 catches for 194 yards with 3 touchdowns.  The Cougs were looking for a replacement for Gabe Marks, and they have found it in both Isaiah Johnson-Mack and Tavares Martin Jr. The 194 yards by Martin Jr. is more than Marks got in any one game, and this offense is just getting started.  Falk has so many offensive weapons that it’s scary to think how much damage they can do when this offense really gets in its groove.  “He’s dynamic, he can do a lot of things, he’s got good hands and can make people miss,” Falk said about Tavares Martine Jr.

Falk said about the performance, “We had some real explosive plays by our outside guys.  I still don’t think we’re quite to our ceiling yet,  I think we have a lot of things to improve on, but it was good to put that many points up.”

“We’ve been waiting for the outside receivers to get in a rhythm, I thought they did today, we got to build on it and continue it,” Leach said.

The Cougs running game who went wild against Montana State, only had 16 carries for 60 yards.   “I didn’t give a lot of thought to that, we kinda identify what the defense gives us and attack,”  said leach.

WAZZU takes on a lowly Nevada Wolfpack teach next week before facing the number 4 ranked USC Trojans on Friday night the week after.



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Shafer Murray

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