What They're Saying: Cardiac Cougs Edition

BOB ROBERTSON told Cougar fans listening on the radio last night that they were witnessing the second-coming of the fabled "Cardic Kids," the Washington State team that specialized in heart-pounding victories 50 years ago this season."The Cardiac Kids Two," said the legendary broadcaster following yet another WSU nailbiter capped off in Falksian glory. Or was it Marksian glory?

No matter. It was a team effort, as Mike Leach said after the game.

Today, the insights and observations are flowing as fast as the smiles that were coming out of the crimson side of the Rose Bowl last night. Here's what the pundits and the Twitter-types had to say about WSU's 31-27 victory in Pasadena ...

“Seven lead changes and a touchdown by each team in the last minute of the game resulted in euphoria for one and misery for the other.”
--The Associated Press

“This wasn't the Washington State that UCLA remembered.”
--Lindsey Thiry, Los Angeles Times

“The victory involved a complete team effort from the Cougars, who got a couple of huge plays on special teams, and a crucial stand-in performance with a touchdown from backup quarterback Peyton Bender.”
--Stefanie Loh, The Seattle Times

“As this writer stood nearby Leach on the sideline over the course of the closing minutes last night, I can honestly tell you who wasn’t stunned by Gabe Marks' athletic catch in the end zone with :03 left on the clock -- Washington State. Thrilled, excited, sure. But not surprised. The Cougar football team expected to win the day. Check that. The demeanor of Leach and his squad on that final drive was that of a team on the brink of victory.”
--Lew Wright, Cougfan.com

“Luke Falk...wasn’t fazed by the three-point deficit with a little more than a minute to play. The redshirt sophomore on pace to break the Pac-12 single-season records for passing yards and touchdowns calmly led his team 75 yards in seven plays, taking one final shot at the end zone before what would have been a field goal attempt to send the game to overtime.”
--Clay Fowler, Los Angeles Daily News

“From start to finish in the game between Washington State and UCLA on Saturday night, it was just a wild affair. With most of the game being complete bonkers, you knew that something crazy was coming for the ending. Boy did we ever get something along those lines, but it was Washington State’s Gabe Marks who put the finishing touches on everything.”
--Jack Jorgensen, Fansided

“This one won't be forgotten any time soon.”
--Kyle Bonagura, ESPN.com

“Seven lead changes and a touchdown by each team in the last minute of the game resulted in euphoria for one and misery for the other.”
--The Associated Press

“Rugged game, late deficit, hostile crowd. All in all, it was perfect conditions for Luke Falk and his Washington State Cougars.”
--Lewiston Tribune

“The UCLA sideline was decorated in doom, players staring toward the sky, players running for the exit. The Rose Bowl stands were emptying in silence, fans hidden under hoodies and hunched over in disappointment.”
--Bill Plaschke, Los Angeles Times

“A few UCLA players warmed up on Washington State's side of the Rose Bowl field before the game, and the Cougars felt disrespected … Several hours and several jaw-dropping moments later, Gabe Marks dived to make a catch that exacted revenge and made a statement: The Cougars are back in the game. 'People were not going to give us respect until they absolutely have to,' Marks said. 'Now they have to.'"
--ESPN.com

“You know that term that shall not be named anymore? Ya, you do. Everyone does. Well, when freshman quarterback Josh Rosen sliced through the Coug defense to score the go-ahead touchdown with just over a minute left, the Cougars looked as if they had reverted to what-now-seems ancient form. Instead, they Falk’d It Up.”
Vince Grippi, Spokesman-Review

“The Cougars are 7-2 since losing to Portland State in the season opener and are off to their best start since 2003. The days of “you-know-what-ing” it are long gone. This team knows how to finish. A nine-win season is very possible.”
--Kevin Gemmell, ESPN.com

“Luke Falk was in the locker room after getting his bell rung the previous series, the Cougar offense was nearly 25 minutes removed from its last TD, and UCLA QB Seth Rosen was throwing some lasers. WSU needed a play. And they got it from two third-year sophomores who have toiled in virtual anonymity since arriving in Cougarville in 2013 ... On a night when Falk burnished his fledgling Heisman credentials and Gabe Marks broke Michael Bumpus' WSU record for career receptions, two guys even ardent WSU fans know just faintly made a difference that changed the arc of this game ... Nate DeRider and B.J. Salmonson.”
--Barry Bolton, Cougfan.com

“Washington State is not a scrappy underdog. It's the middle of November and the Cougs are not the spoiler whose only measure of success is ruining someone else's record. All they are is the scariest team to play in the Pac-12 right now, and quietly they have been for a month.”
--Brian Floyd, CougCenter

“We'll be like Moses if we're everything you said (about maturity and mental toughness).”
--Mike Leach to ESPN sideline reporter

And from the Twitter-verse:

Tell my wife I love her, my heart may beat out of my chest.
@RM_Preston

Marksism.
@JPBlanchette

Let's just go ahead and say that's a smile from Mike Leach
@COUGFANcom on screen grab of coach’s face when Marks scored winning TD

What a day to be alive.
@JoeDoyleWSU

if my neighbors were asleep they aren't anymore
@TheCraigPowers

We have Gabe Marks and you don't.
@Huddlestron

Luke Falk for Nobel Prize in ... something ?#GoCougs
@jdstiles

Luke Falk is some kind of sorcerer. ?#GoCougs ?#almosthadaheartattack
@CPRichins

Someone please put Luke Falk in the coldest ice bath tolerable by humans
@ebsbc

Said it before and will say it again – UNFALKINGBELIEVABLE!
@COUGFANcom

PICTURED AT TOP OF PAGE: WSU DEFENSIVE LINEMAN DARRYL PAULO

Videotape of game-winning score:

Cougfan Top Stories