Luke Falk threw for 226 yards and three touchdowns as Washington State beat Idaho 56-6 on Saturday, a positive end to a tumultuous week for the Cougars.
James Williams rushed for 126 yards and a touchdown for Washington State (1-2), which won on a wet, windy day when the Air Raid offense was not working very well.
Idaho (1-2) struggled for the second straight week against a Pac-12 team, after losing at No. 8 Washington.
Falk threw a 10-yard touchdown pass to Robert Lewis early in the fourth for a 35-6 lead, and the Cougars added three more touchdowns in the fourth.
“We played hard the whole game,” Washington State coach Mike Leach said. “Defense played better than offense.”
“The sloppiness with regards to penalties is alarming,” Leach said of the 11 penalties against the Cougars.
Leach said his players seemed to respond well to a week of hard practices and harsh criticism.
“We seem to have a group that has a tendency to go soft,” Leach said. “We’ve got to be on them all the time.”
Idaho coach Paul Petrino did not appear in the postgame interview room.
Washington State was expected to contend for the Pac-12 North, but opened the season with losses to FCS foe Eastern Washington and Boise State. That prompted Leach this week to rip his Cougars as soft. Leach also complained that Pullman police seemed to be targeting his players, after four were recently arrested in three different incidents, which the police chief has denied.
▪ IDAHO: The Vandals, who have designs on qualifying for a bowl game this season, were coming off a 59-14 loss at No. 8 Washington. The Vandals and Cougars are located in towns just 8 miles apart and this was the 92nd meeting between the two closest neighbors in the FBS.
▪ WASHINGTON STATE: Idaho has often been a cure for what ailed the Cougars. Washington State leads the series 72-17-3.
▪ IDAHO: Plays at UNLV on Saturday.
▪ WASHINGTON STATE: Has a bye this week, and hosts No. 22 Oregon on Oct. 1.