The CougCenter authors love talking about WSU football in Slack, and one of the WSU football things we love talking the most about is how great Gabe Marks is. We even have a Gabe Marks emoji. (Is that weird?)
We also love accompanying much of our Gabe Marks fanboy analysis with a goat emoji — as in, the Greatest Of All Time. It’s not just that he’s so amazing on the field (although that's generally a prerequisite for such reverence), and it's not even just that he's candid off the field.
I think it's more that there's a certain swagger to the way he does all of those things, which includes how he gives interviews.
The latest installments come from a two-part interview with KREM-TV's Darnay Tripp and a WSU Athletics-produced short about a recent trip by Marks back to his hometown of Venice, California. -- all of which you really, really should watch in their entireties.
But if you're still skeptical and want to know what's in there before you invest 20 minutes of your time, well, consider this your preview. (However, I'll tell you up front that the words don't do justice to the tone of some of the answers.)
Tripp: "Is there one thing you were thinking about coming back this year?"
Marks: "I mean, I wanna win a lot of games this year, obviously. I just want to catch a lot of passes, man, catch a lot of touchdowns, you know? Make Pullman go crazy again, you know what I mean? If we can win more than nine, you might to have to call the fire department. Because Pullman will be ablaze."
In talking about Marks' game-winning TD against UCLA and Leach's subsequent celebration:
Tripp: "How often do you see Mike Leach these days like that?"
Marks: "Never, that's probably why he likes me now."
Expanding on Leach ...
Tripp: "How has your relationship with Mike Leach developed over these years?"
Marks: "Heh. (Wry smile.) It's developed a long way. We had some down time where I needed to mature a little bit. That was a rough patch and I got out of that. I just started doing my job and started working really hard, and we're the two best friends anyone could have."
Tripp: "How different is the Mike Leach you know from the Mike Leach that we have an idea about, the perception we have?"
Marks: "The perception of you have, that's what he is. He doesn't flip it off and on, you know, like smoe different guy behind closed doors. He's really the same guy and I think that's what attracts a lot of kids to come here. Because he so like that, the whole coaching staff is like that. They're just real black and white about it; they tell you the truth, so that's pretty important.
"I think he’s got some real swagger dealing with the press. I’ve tried to develop that in my game."
Tripp then went through some of Marks' more notable quotes from the past year, such as, "That is the hype of QBs. They win the Heisman every year. Let someone else win a Heisman." His response?
"A receiver can’t win a Heisman because the quarterback’s throwing him the ball," Marks said. "How come it just can’t be that he’s open all the time? Let’s give it to a center! Centers get no love. You see Riley Sorenson out there? Dude’s a man. They call him the wizard. How come personality can’t win you a Heisman? You know what I mean?"
Tripp: Would you be a preseason candidate if personality could win you a Heisman?
Marks: "Me? I’m not going to get too longform here, but ... you know what I mean ... why not? Why not put me in the running, huh?"
Seriously, go watch them.