This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2015, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
(This is the third in a series of spring updates about Pac-12 football programs) Due to the Pac-12's scheduling rotation, Logan's Luke Falk won't face Utah until he's a senior in 2017. He will have passed for a lot of yards by then. Connor Halliday's knee injury last season accelerated the timetable of Falk's becoming Washington State's No. 1 quarterback. He responded well as a redshirt freshman, amid some issues with interceptions. Falk passed for 471 yards and five touchdowns in a win over Oregon State, becoming the conference's offensive player of the week. He threw for 601 yards at Arizona State in a performance tarnished by four interceptions. In six appearances (three starts), Falk completed 156 of 243 passes for 1,859 yards and 13 touchdowns, with seven interceptions. After spring practice, WSU coach Mike Leach said, "He's just gotten better and better." Leach was particularly impressed by Falk's growth as a leader, which is important as the Cougars move into player-organized sessions in the summer. The Cougars must replace receiver Vince Mayle, a fourth-round NFL draft pick. The bigger issue is on defensive, where Leach fired his coordinator and hired Alex Grinch, a former Missouri assistant. Leach pronounced the defense "better all the way around" in the spring, with the Cougars coming off a 3-9 season (2-7 in the Pac-12). WSU opens the season Sept. 5 against Portland State. The Cougars' first Pac-12 game is Oct. 3 at California. WSU lost 60-59 to the Bears last season. – Kurt Kragthorpe