USA Today Sports Images

3 takeaways: WSU unstoppable in win over Cal

PULLMAN - Washington State (8-2, 7-0 Pac-12) put together a huge record setting night. Mike Leach’s Air Raid offense showed exactly why the Cougs are  No. 1 in the Pac-12 North. Wazzu outplayed Cal (4-6, 2-5 Pac-12) in all three phases of the game while proving that they are the team to beat.

Here are my three takeaways from Saturdays 56-21 win over Cal:

1: Leach, Falk, Marks comprise a trio that's unstoppable

Not a single team this season has been able to slow down Luke Falk, Gabe Marks, or the entire Cougar offense for that matter. The same view of the Air Raid showed against Cal on Saturday as WSU put together seven scoring drives, five through the air and two on the ground. Wazzu's head man Mike Leach has now led his team to string together eight straight wins by forcing defenses to respect his offensive. The Cougs are clearly loaded with dangerous weapons at every skill skill position. Beyond record setting performances from Falk and Marks, the Cougs showed on Saturday that they are stacked with talent from top to bottom with James Williams, River Cracraft, Tavares Martin, Gerard Wicks, Jamal Morrow, and so many others.

2: Defense came to play

It wasn’t a perfect night for the defense, but still an impressive one to say the least. Aside from a couple long TD passes, the Cougar defense limited the Bears all night as they kept them from scoring on three of Cal’s five trips into the red-zone. A big fourth down stop from sophomore corner Darrien Molton and a game-changing interception from junior linebacker Nate DeRider highlighted the night for the Coug D. Heck, if you take away a few dozen Bear Raid screen passes, the scoreboard and the stat sheet would look drastically different in favor for Wazzu.

3: Special teams has a near-perfect night

Special teams coordinator Eric Mele deserves a whole lot of credit after the win over Cal. His special forces were flawless in coverage and took another return back to the house. Kaleb Fossum’s punt return for a touchdown was the second special team TD in 2016 and the first time punt return taken to the house by a WSU team since 2005. Erik Powell’s six kickoffs for a touchback, excellent punt and kickoff coverage - all that spells a dominating night by Wazzu special teams.

RELATED: Marks makes it official, he's No. 1


Cougfan Top Stories