WHAT THEY'RE SAYING: Hello, 'Cool Hand Luke'

YOU KNOW IT WAS a successful debut when fans are already debating the nickname that will immortalize their new quarterback among the greats. Whether he ends up dubbed 'Cool Hand Luke' or "Luke Skyfalker,' the redshirt freshman's coming-out party as the Cougars' starter in their 39-32 win at Oregon State was nothing short of incredible -- and the media and Twitter-verse had plenty to say about it.

In a word, the kid was magnificent. A season that’s long since gone south on Washington State took a sanguine, optimistic turn Saturday on a chilly Willamette Valley afternoon, as Falk gave WSU faithful what every fan has to have: hope for the future.
-- Bud Withers, The Seattle Times

With Halliday sidelined for the season, Falk stepped in and looked like Peyton Manning.
-- Ken Goe, The Oregonian

Halliday’s arm strength will be missed and Falk doesn’t yet have the same command of the Air Raid offense or quick release on his passes. But he extends plays by rolling out of the pocket and going to his fourth or fifth receiver – as was the case on a 20-yard pass to Isiah Myers – and by running at the right moments.
-- Jacob Thorpe, The Spokesman-Review

Washington State has produced enough first-round NFL draft picks at quarterback to create its own version of a QB Mount Rushmore. Jack Thompson. Timm Rosenbach. Drew Bledsoe. Ryan Leaf. But none had a more spectacular collegiate starting debut than Luke Falk, who looked every bit as impressive as his injured predecessor, Connor Halliday, in the Cougars’ 39-32 win Saturday at Oregon State.
-- Chris Chancellor, Cougfan.com

Yet in a game featuring the Pac-12’s all-time leading passer, it was Falk who was the best quarterback on the field while completing 44 of 61 passes for 471 yards and five touchdowns. It did not help that Oregon State’s defense specialized in missing tackles.
-- Zack Hall, The Bulletin

Falk, a former walk-on, looked like he’s been running the Air Raid for years. Without a bowl game in the picture, the redshirt freshman gives WSU fans something to look forward to the last two games as they prep for life without Connor Halliday.
-- Kyle Bonagura, ESPN.com

Despite trailing 10-0, the Cougars did not give up and head for the airport. Instead, the defense dug deep and went Beaver hunting. Among their most notable moments was using one of their four sacks on the night to quash a second-quarter drive that made it to the Cougars' 15 and resulted in another field goal.
-- Jennifer Chancellor, Cougfan.com

Making his first career start, Luke Falk satisfied his coach's demands for steady efficiency and focus. His moments of brilliance were just extra credit.
-- The Lewiston Tribune

But too often, the OSU offense settled for field goals when the Cougars scored touchdowns in a 39-32 loss to help complete the latest chapter of the Beavers' epic slide during the second half of the season.
-- Gina Mizell, The Oregonian

The simple fact that the Oregon State Beavers had to settle for four field goals ultimately doomed them against Washington State. Garrett Owens hit all of his field goal attempts but it was no match for first-time Cougar starter Luke Falk.
-- Anne M. Peterson, The Associated Press

Connor Halliday never stepped foot in Reser Stadium on Saturday afternoon, but his presence was overwhelming. One week after Halliday’s brilliant senior season came to a premature end, Washington State players said they were inspired by their fiery senior quarterback in a 39-32 triumph over Oregon State.
-- Howie Stalwick, Cougfan.com

Sean Mannion expected a close one with Washington State. Mannion said during game week that when the Beavers play the Washington school, it’s usually a tough, hotly-contested game. It was, until the Beavers allowed WSU to go on two late-scoring drives to put the game away in a 39-32 Pac-12 Conference loss in Reser Stadium.
-- Kevin Hampton, Corvallis Gazette-Times

If ever an opponent should have been easy pickings, it was Washington State. The Cougars backslid into Reser Stadium on a four-game losing streak, gave a former walk-on his first start at quarterback, and were in a 10-point hole after Oregon State's first two possessions. But the Beavers not only failed to capitalize on their fast start, they stumbled to a 39-32 loss.
-- Ken Goe, The Oregonian

AND FROM THE TWITTER-VERSE ...

@lukefalk4 congrats bro. In your first start played tough as freaking nails! So proud, and so happy for you.
-- @c_halliday12

Great win! Proud of the fight these guys played with today! #GoCougs
-- @GAndersonWSU

Great Team win Today! @lukefalk4 and the offense controlled the ball like crazy! Big Hits all Day! That is the Way to Compete! #GoCougs
-- @CoachKWils

Love the heart and performance by Luke Falk and the Cougs today, this season may be lost but there's a bright future on the horizon #GoCougs
-- @Kelsey_Fletch

I know I'm late with this, but #GoCougs #GoCougs #GoCougs #GoCougs #GoCougs #GoCougs #GoCougs #GoCougs #GoCougs
-- @erikcoleman

@lukefalk4 great work today. Mobility, decision making, good reads. Looking forward to things to come. #GoCougs
-- @TallFatKid

WSU WR Vince Mayle has a shot in the NFL. Legit. #GoCougs
-- @Sportssammy

But all in all a Falking amazing Saturday. Waited too many weeks for this. #GoCougs
-- @coug123

@lukefalk4 thanks Luke. We all needed that. Looking forward to watching you play. #GoCougs
-- @scottyj509

Seriously folks #coolhandluke Might be the truth! #GoCougs
-- @MLindleyMusic

Falk still has 3 full years to develop too. Build a defense for this kid and watch out Pac12 #GoCougs
-- @CaseyDuclos

Idc what school you go too, if you're a college football fan, you gotta appreciate Luke Falk's performance today! #GoCougs
-- @JakeRICHards101


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