Last week we took a look at Luke Falk's record-setting pace from a historical standpoint in which we compared his current statistics with former Mike Leach quarterbacks over the last 18 years. This week — and for the rest of the season — we're taking a graphical look at Falk's pace as it relates to Washington State, Pac-12 and NCAA records.
Thanks to Kirt Onthank for the graphs. One note from him: He's using linear regression for the projections, rather than simple extrapolation, which reduces the effect of an outlier performance.
Pac-12 single-season touchdown record: Marcus Mariota - 42
Even with just two touchdowns passes last week against Stanford, Falk is still on pace to shatter Connor Halliday's Washington State single-season record of 34 touchdown passes set in the Cougars' 13-game bowl season two years ago. Falk's 42 touchdown pace without a bowl and 46 touchdown pace with a bowl game would also tie or break the Pac-12 record for touchdowns in a single season set by Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Mariota last season. Mariota, however, needed 15 games to break the previous record of 39 touchdown passes held by USC's Matt Barkley.
Pac-12 single-season yards record: Sean Mannion - 4,662
This series might as well be called Chasing Halliday, that is until Falk begins breaking his own records. The next record up for grabs this season for Falk is passing yards in a single season, which he's also on pace to shatter. Halliday, in 13 games during the 2013 season, threw for 4,597 yards, a mark Falk is on pace to break in a little over 11 games.
Falk's current pace of 4,873 passing yards without a bowl game would break Sean Mannion's Pac-12 record of 4,662 set in Oregon State's bowl game season in 2013. From there, Falk would be padding his already established Pac-12 record should the Cougars reach a bowl game, though his pace of 5,287 yards would fall far short of B.J. Symons' ridiculous 5,883 yard season under Leach at Texas Tech in 2003.
NCAA single-season attempts record: B.J. Symons - 719
The first of two NCAA records Falk could realistically (and probably will) set during his redshirt sophomore season is attempts. Falk is currently on pace to attempt 723 passes should the Cougars reach a bowl game, which would break Symons' record of 719 set in 2013. Halliday fell just short of Symons' record in 2013, attempting 714 passes.
Falk is chucking the rock 56 times a game — a number we could see increase slightly as the season progresses — while also completing 70.8 percent of those passes, which, if he keeps up his current pace, would be the third-most accurate season for any Leach quarterback.
NCAA single-season completions record: Graham Harrell - 512
While Falk is on pace to attempt more passes than any quarterback in the history of college football, he's also on pace to complete more passes than anyone ever has in a single season. Halliday holds the WSU single-season record with 449 completed passes in 2013, a number only five other quarterbacks have ever surpassed. Without a bowl game, Falk would break Halliday's record by 31 completions. Throw in a bowl game and Falk's pace of 520 completions would break Graham Harrell's record of 512 set as a redshirt junior in 2007.
Pac-12 single-season touchdown reception record: JJ Stokes & Mario Bailey - 17
As a bonus, we'll be tracking Gabe Marks' unreal season as he chases the Pac-12 touchdown receptions record of 17 set by Washington's Mario Bailey (1991) and UCLA's J.J. Stokes (1993). At his current pace, Marks, with the benefit of a bowl game, would match the Pac-12 record while also shattering Vince Mayle's WSU single-season record of 12 receiving scores set last season in 12 games.
At his current pace — regardless of whether he plays in a bowl game or not — Marks is on pace to finish with the third-most touchdown receptions in a single season for a Leach receiver, trailing just Michael Crabtree's out-of-this-world 2007 and 2008 season's, in which he caught 22 and 19 touchdowns, respectively.