USA Today Sports/James Snook

In spectacular fashion, WSU receiver Gabe Marks breaks Pac-12 record for most career catches, tells refs he's keeping ball

WASHINGTON STATE receiver Gabe Marks, shut out in the first half, turned on the afterburners in the second Saturday night in the Cougars' 56-21 victory over Cal at Martin Stadium. With seven catches in the final 30 minutes, he broke the Pac-12 record for most career receptions.

He pulled down the record-setter -- the 295th catch of his career -- on a 7-yard scoring aerial from Luke Falk mid-way through the fourth quarter. It was his second TD of the period, as he hauled in a 16-yarder from Falk at the 13:49 mark.

As he was leaving the end zone with the coveted ball, Marks said after the game, he looked at one official and said "No (you can't you have the ball back)" and another official started calling "ball, ball" and Marks replied "No, it's my ball!" 

Marks hangs on to ball

Public address man Glenn Johnson brought the Cougar Nation to its feet when he announced Marks' record, which surpassed former Colorado receiver Nelson Spruce.

Marks dutifully removed his helmet and raised his left arm to acknowledge the admiration.

"I wasn't feeling all blush or stuff, it wasn't romantic," Marks said of the moment. "It was cool, but I knew it was going to happen at some point."

WSU coach Mike Leach said Marks is "a great representative to have that record," and Cougar quarterback called the record catch "awesome" and dubbed Marks a "tremendous player."

Not only did Marks make No. 295 memorable with the TD, but his catch that tied the record was a thing of beauty that required a lengthy review by officials to rule that he got a foot down before going out of bounds.

The Pac-12 receptions record wasn't Marks' only milestone on the night. He also surpassed Marquess Wilson for most receiving yards in WSU history.


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