Oklahoma State’s loss to Central Michigan was one that basically no one expected, ESPECIALLY in the manner in which it ended. While the loss never should have happened according to the NCAA rule book, it never should have happened regardless of an officiating goof.
The Cowboys’ offense was extremely underwhelming considering the inexplicable talent all over the place. While it’s definitely too early to label the season a wash, some changes are going to have to be made. Oklahoma State faces Pittsburgh this upcoming Saturday, and they are much more talented, so it will be interesting to see how the Cowboys bounce back.
Quarterbacks | Mason Rudolph played a fairly imbalanced game. He threw very well on short passes, but he missed a lot of deep balls that could have turned into huge gains at the least and touchdowns at the most. He finished 27/44 for 286 yards and two TDs, but his interception with 6 minutes in the 4th quarter was downright ugly. Freshman Wide Receiver Dillon Stoner also made a guest appearance in a Wildcat formation and threw a 2-yard TD pass to James Washington. Overall Grade | C-
Offensive Line | The line gave up three sacks again for the second consecutive week, and they only helped the running backs rush for 2.3 yards per attempt and no touchdowns. It could be a long year for the Oklahoma State running game. Overall Grade | D
Receivers | Most of the issues in the passing game had to do with Mason Rudolph’s downfield in accuracy, so the receiving corp was probably the only bright spot for the Cowboys. Sophomore Jalen McCleskey led a group of seven different receivers who caught a pass raking in eleven receptions for 103 yards and a touchdown. Junior James Washington added on five receptions for 69 yards and a touchdown, as well. Overall Grade | A
Running Backs | Regardless of stats, Oklahoma State has a talented group of running backs with a lot of potential. However, potential means absolutely nothing without output. Freshman Justice Hill and Senior Chris Carson were the only runners with any actual stats, but even they were ineffective. Hill rushed five times for 31 yards, and Carson rushed eight times for 27 yards. As a team, the Cowboys rushed for 58 yards on 25 attempts. This has to improve, or it’s going to be a rough season in the backfield. Overall Grade | D-
Coaching | Without a doubt, the only coaching decision that will be remember from this game is the decision for Mason Rudolph to just chunk the ball on 4th and long with four seconds remaining in the game. The play led to an intentional grounding penalty, which ultimately should have ended the game, but due the officiating slip-up, it ended up leading to the Cowboys’ loss. Overall Grade | D
Offensive Player of the Game
WR Jalen McCleskey | 11 catches for 103 yards and a touchdown.