— Cowboy Football (@CowboyFB) October 1, 2016
For the first time since 1997, the Oklahoma State Cowboys defeated the Texas Longhorns in Stillwater, Oklahoma 49-31. The offense was rolling, and the defense struggled at times, but it was the special teams that caught national attention.
Quarterbacks: Mason Rudolph had his most efficient game of the season on Saturday, throwing 19/28 for 392 yards, three touchdowns, and no interceptions. He also managed to run the ball well, scoring a touchdown on a 10-yard rush. Overall Grade | A
Offensive Line: The offensive line did a solid job, as they helped Cowboy running backs rush for 163 yards and three touchdowns on 43 attempts for an average of 3.8 yards per rush. Mason Rudolph had overall good protection, but he was sacked three times. Overall Grade | B
Running Backs: The Cowboys scored three rushing touchdowns as Justice Hill was the primary rusher for the second week in a row. Justice gained 143 yards and a touchdown on 25 rushes for a 5.4 yard average. Rennie Childs only carried the ball twice, but he found the endzone for the third week in a row on a 12-yard rumble. Rudolph had the other rushing touchdown. Overall Grade | A
Receivers: Seven different receivers caught a pass from Rudolph, and of those seven, five of them had at lead three receptions. Jalen McCleskey led all receivers with four receptions for 109 yards and two touchdowns. James Washington had a solid game of three catches for 91 yards and a touchdown before he took a brutal hit to the head, leaving him temporarily unconcious. He was ruled out for the rest of the game, and his return for this Saturday against Iowa State is dependent upon him clearing concussion protocols. Chris Lacey and Blake Jarwin also had solid days as they both broke the 50-yard barrier with 52 yards and 50 yards respectively. Overall Grade | A
Coaching: Playcalling has been an issue at times for Oklahoma State, but Mike Yurcich and company did a pretty good job on Saturday. The Cowboys converted on seven of fifteen third down opportunities, and scored all four times that they were in the redzone. Overall Grade | A
Offensive Player of the Game
RB Jusice Hill: Hill continues to impress as he ran for 143 yards and a touchdown on 25 carries on Saturday. If he stays this course, he could have a career to be remembered by Oklahoma State fans everywhere. He took much better care of the ball this week and had some impressive runs, including a 30-yarder on his lone touchdown for the day.
Defensive Line: After doing a solid job against Baylor’s rush attack last week, the defensive line faultered on Saturday as Texas running backs D’onta Foreman and Chris Warren III ran all over the place for 329 yards and 4 touchdowns on 49 carries. This has to improve if the Cowboys want to stay successful on the defensive end. On a bright note, Junior DT Vincent Taylor was a monster on special teams, blocking two Longhorn XP attempts, one of which he recovered and then pitched to teammate Tre Flowers to be returned for two points. Overall Grade | C+
Linebackers: The linebackers did not help the defensive line much at stopping the Longhorn rushing attack, but you can’t pin the blame all on them. Junior LB Chad Whitener finished tied for third on the team with six tackles. Overall Grade | B-
Secondary: After last week, it was not a difficult task for the defensive backs to show improvement, but they way they played against Texas was outstanding. Longhorn QB Shane Buechele managed to throw 21/33 for 239 yards and a touchdown, but the Cowboys defensive backs only gave up a couple of deep balls, a problem that plagued them heavily last week. Senior Safety Jordan Stearns led the team with 12 tackles, as well as intercepting Buechele late in the 3rd quarter. Senior CB Linzy Pipkins had seven tackles, including one for a loss, and junior CB Ramon Richards had six tackles, including one sack. Overall Grade | A-
Coaching: Defensive Coordinator Glenn Spencer made a move to the press box this week to assist with dealing with the typically fast-paced offenses of the Big 12. The move seemed to help Spencer with identifying issues and making necessary change. The defense gave up a lot of rushing yards, but overall, it made some stops when needed. Overall Grade | B-
Defensive Player of the Game
DT Vincent Taylor: Taylor’s two blocked extra point attempts, one which ended in two points for the Cowboys, were not only clutch on the scoreboard, but they played a huge part in swinging momentum to the Cowboys. Taylor also had two tackles, one of which was an assist on a tackle for a loss.