Game Notes - Cowboys Open Home Slate vs. Lamar

Davidell Collins

Davidell Collins

Sept. 10, 2013

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Cowboy Football This Week
LAMAR
6:30 p.m. CT | Sept. 14, 2013 | Boone Pickens Stadium (60,218 cap.)

Television: Fox Sports Net (Announcers TBD)
Radio: Cowboy Radio Network (Dave Hunziker, John Holcomb and Robert Allen)
National Radio: None
Internet: okstate.com
Satellite Radio: Sirius Channel 135 | XM Channel 195

The Basics
The Oklahoma State football team (2-0 overall; 0-0 Big 12) opens the 2013 home schedule when it hosts Lamar (1-1 overall; 0-0 Southland) at 6:30 p.m. CT on Saturday, Sept. 14 in Boone Pickens Stadium.

On the Air
Saturday's game can be seen live in Oklahoma, Texas, Louisiana and Arkansas on FOX Sports Southwest/FS Oklahoma. In addition, the game will be televised live nationally on FOX College Sports with Ron Thulin, Dave Lapham and Jim Knox on the call. Other regional networks that will carry the game live include FOX Sports Florida, FOX Sports Ohio, FOX Sports Wisconsin as well as SportsSouth, FOX Sports Arizona Plus, FOX Sports Detroit Plus and FOX Sports North Plus. Areas of FOX Sports Midwest that do not televise the St. Louis Cardinals will also carry the game, as will areas of FOX Sports South that do not televise Atlanta Braves games. The game will also be carried live on the Cowboy Radio Network, with Dave Hunziker handling play-by-play, John Holcomb providing analysis and Robert Allen reporting from the sideline.

In The Polls
Oklahoma State is ranked No. 12 in this week's Associated Press poll and is No. 11 in the USA Today Coaches Poll. Lamar is unranked in this week's FCS poll.

Ranking Roundup
The Cowboys are the highest-ranked team from the Big 12 in both the Associated Press and USA Today Coaches polls. OSU was ranked No. 13 in the preseason AP poll, marking the fourth time in the last five seasons that Oklahoma State has secured a preseason AP ranking. The Cowboys were No. 9 going into 2009, No. 9 going into 2011 and No. 19 going into 2012.

An Oklahoma State Win Would...

• Mark the sixth time in nine years under Mike Gundy that OSU has started the season 3-0. For some perspective on that, OSU had only three 3-0 starts from 1988 until Gundy took over in 2005 (1988, 1997 and 2004).
• Mark the fourth time in the last five years that the Cowboys have gone undefeated in regular-season non-conference games.
• Be the Cowboys' 18th consecutive win in a home opener. OSU hasn't lost a home opener since 1995.
• Improve the Cowboys to 39-6 in their last 45 home openers.
• Improve the Cowboys to 14-1 in their last 15 non-conference games.
• Improve the Cowboys to 27-3 in their last 30 games against unranked opponents.
• Mark the Cowboys' 17th straight win over teams currently in the FCS.
• Improve the Cowboys to 23-5-1 against teams currently in the FCS.

An Oklahoma State Loss Would...

• Be the Cowboys' first to an FCS team since 1948, when OSU lost to William & Mary, 20-0.
• Snap OSU's current 16-game winning streak against teams currently in the FCS.
• Be only its fourth loss to an unranked opponent since the start of the 2010 season.
• Be only its second loss in its last 16 non-conference games.
• Snap OSU's 17-game winning streak in home openers that dates back to 1995.
• Drop the Cowboys' record to 38-7 in their last 45 home openers.

Walsh is Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week
Oklahoma State quarterback J.W. Walsh earned Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week honors after his record-setting performance in the Cowboys' 56-35 win at UTSA, it was announced today. Walsh connected on 24-of-27 passes for 326 yards and four touchdowns. His 88.9 completion percentage set a new OSU record for single-game completion percentage, minimum 20 pass attempts. He added a rushing touchdown as well. A junior from Denton, Texas, Walsh had more touchdown passes (four) than incomplete passes (three) in the game. Walsh's 239.20 pass efficiency mark in the contest was good for the fourth-best single-game mark in school history and his QBR of 98.1 is the highest for any Big 12 quarterback in a single game this year, according to ESPN Stats and Information. Walsh started the game by completing 10 consecutive passes, then had two incompletions, then completed 10 consecutive passes again. By the time his day was done at the 9:47 mark of the third quarter, OSU held a 42-7 lead. This is the first Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week honor for Walsh and is the first for a Cowboy since Josh Stewart earned the recognition following OSU's win over West Virginia last season.

Late Start
The week-three home opener is the latest for OSU since 1998, when the Cowboys played at Kansas and at Tulsa to start the season before coming home to host Mississippi State that year.

Cowboys in Home Openers
Oklahoma State has a home-opening record of 78-28-5 (.725 pct.) The Cowboys have won each of their last 17 home openers, good for the longest such streak in school history. The Cowboys are 38-6 in their last 44 home openers.

Connections

• Oklahoma State director of recruiting Johnny Barr coached the Lamar secondary from 1979-82 in his first four-year college coaching job.
• Lamar assistant head coach/secondary coach Allen Johnson served in a quality control role under Mike Gundy at OSU in 2006.
• Lamar defensive line coach Carey Bailey coached the OSU defensive line under Les Miles in 2004.
• Oklahoma State receiver Jhajuan Seales is originally from Port Arthur, Texas, which is just 15 minutes from the Lamar campus in Beaumont, Texas.

Oklahoma State in Non-Conference Games
Including last week's 56-35 win at UTSA, Oklahoma State is 13-1 in its last 14 non-conference games, dating back to the start of the 2010 season. It should be noted that OSU has not just beaten up on teams that can't compete. Wins over teams from the Southeastern Conference, the Pac-12 and Big Ten are included on the list. Additionally, the Pokes have faced no fewer than three non-conference opponents that went on to play in bowl games per year during that span (Troy, Tulsa and Arizona in 2010; Louisiana, Tulsa and Stanford in 2011; Arizona, Louisiana and Purdue in 2012.) A look at Oklahoma State's last 14 non-conference games:

Sept. 4, 2010 vs. Washington State ........ W, 65-17
Sept. 11, 2010 vs. Troy ........ W, 41-38
Sept. 18, 2010 vs. Tulsa ........ W, 65-28
Dec. 29, 2010 vs. Arizona (Alamo Bowl) ........ W, 36-10
Sept. 3, 2011 vs. Louisiana ........ W, 61-34
Sept. 8, 2011 vs. Arizona ........ W, 37-14
Sept. 17, 2011 at Tulsa ........ W, 59-33
Jan. 2, 2012 vs. Stanford (Fiesta Bowl) ........ W, 41-38
Sept. 1, 2012 vs. Savannah State ........ W, 84-0
Sept. 8, 2012 at Arizona ........ L, 38-59
Sept. 15, 2012 vs. Louisiana ........ W, 65-24
Jan. 1, 2013 vs. Purdue (Heart of Dallas Bowl) ........ W, 58-14
Aug. 31, 2013 vs. Mississippi State (in Houston) ........ W, 21-3
Sept. 7, 2013 at USTA ........ W, 56-35
Sept. 14, 2013 vs. Lamar ........ -

Border Patrol
Oklahoma State has fared well against teams from Texas, winning 11 of its last 13 games against teams from the Lone Star State. A look:

Nov. 14, 2009 vs. Texas Tech ........ W, 24-17
Sept. 30, 2010 vs. Texas A&M ........ W, 38-35
Oct. 16, 2010 at Texas Tech ........ W, 34-17
Nov. 6, 2010 vs. No. 22 Baylor ........ W, 55-28
Nov. 13, 2010 at Texas ........ W, 33-16
Sept. 24, 2011 at No. 8 Texas A&M ........ W, 30-29
Oct. 15, 2011 at No. 22 Texas ........ W, 38-26
Oct. 29, 2011 vs. Baylor ........ W, 59-24
Nov. 12, 2011 at Texas Tech ........ W, 66-6
Sept. 29, 2012 vs. No. 12 Texas ........ L, 36-41
Oct. 27, 2012 vs. TCU ........ W, 36-14
Nov. 17, 2012 vs. No. 23 Texas Tech ........ W, 59-21
Dec. 1, 2012 at Baylor ........ L, 34-41
Sept. 14, 2012 vs. Lamar ........ -

Notable Streaks Entering the Lamar Game

• OSU has won 16 consecutive games over teams currently in the FCS. Its last loss was in 1948.
• OSU has amassed at least 400 yards of offense in its last 10 games and in 27 of its last 28 contests.
• OSU has won the turnover battle in six of its last seven games.
• OSU has rushed for over 200 yards in five of its last six games.
• OSU has at least one rushing touchdown in each of its last seven games and in 16 of its last 17 contests.
• OSU has at least one touchdown drive of faster than two minutes in each of its last 24 games and in 40 of its last 41 contests.
• Receiver Josh Stewart has at least four receptions in 14 consecutive games.
• Linebacker Shaun Lewis has started 34 straight games.

Pick Your Poison
In week one, Oklahoma State ripped off 286 rushing yards in beating Mississippi State. In week two, the Cowboys racked up 518 passing yards in beating UTSA. The point? Oklahoma State's offense is built to succeed in a variety of ways. If an opposing defense is bent on taking away the Cowboys' passing attack, OSU has the weapons to win with its running game. If an opposing defense loads up against the run, the Cowboys unleash a passing attack that has ranked in the top seven nationally in each of the past three seasons. This has been a theme since the Cowboys went to their current offensive system in 2010.

Spreading the Wealth
Further illustrations of how Oklahoma State's offensive balance through two games this season:
• Eight different players have combined to score OSU's 11 touchdowns this year.
• Of those 11 touchdowns, six were scored via the pass (to six different receivers) and five were scored via the run.
• 13 different players caught a pass in the Cowboys' 56-35 win at UTSA.
• Of those 13 different players to catch a pass in the win at UTSA, 10 averaged 10 yards or more per reception.
• Oklahoma State has 16 offensive plays that gained 20 yards or more from scrimmage. Those 16 plays were made by 11 different players.
• Eight different OSU receivers have four receptions or more this season. No OSU receiver has more than nine receptions.

Two Areas of Perfection - So Far
Through two games, Oklahoma State is perfect in two areas - red zone proficiency and ball security. The Cowboys have scored touchdowns on each of their eight trips into the red zone and are yet to commit a turnover in 2013.

Toughness Downs
One of the most frequent stereotypes used against spread offense teams is that they are all about skill and finesse and lack toughness and grit. Well, on third and short (defined here as four yards or fewer to go) - a situation where most defenses are expecting the run - OSU has run the ball five times and converted all five into first downs. Similarly, the Cowboys have punched in four rushing touchdowns of four yards or less this year - again, in situations where opposing defenses are expecting the run.

Front Seven Making Plays Against the Run
One way to look at a team's run defense is to see who is making the tackles. If the tackles are coming from the front seven, then chances are that team's run defense is better than it would be if the tackles are coming from the secondary. In Oklahoma State's case, the tackles are coming from the front seven. A look:

Leading Tacklers on Running Plays
1. Caleb Lavey, LB - 10
2. Tyler Johnson, DE - 8
Daytawion Lowe, FS - 8
4. Calvin Barnett, DT - 7
5. Shaun Lewis, LB - 7
6. Jimmy Bean, DE - 5

Shutout Quarters
Oklahoma State has not allowed a point in either the second quarter or the third quarter of its games this year. The Cowboys have outscored their opposition, 28-0 in the second quarter and 14-0 in the third quarter. The Pokes gave up 28 points in the fourth quarter at UTSA, but it should be noted that the OSU backups were on the field for the bulk of that time.

Turnovers are Back on the Menu
Forcing turnovers has been at the core of Oklahoma State's defensive identity for years. In fact, OSU ranks second nationally with 134 turnovers forced from 2009 through the present, trailing only Oregon's 137. The Cowboys led the nation in takeaways as part of their Big 12 championship season of 2011, but slipped in that area in 2012. Through two games in 2013, turnovers are back on the OSU menu, with the Cowboys intercepting two passes against both Mississippi State and UTSA. OSU's four interceptions this year leads the Big 12 and ranks ninth nationally.

The Big 12's Best

• OSU leads the Big 12 and ranks ninth nationally with four interceptions.
• OSU leads the Big 12 and ranks 18th nationally with 1.0 sacks allowed per game.
• OSU leads the Big 12 and ranks 12th nationally with a 2.0 turnover margin.
• OSU leads the Big 12 and the nation with a 100.0 percent conversion rate in the red zone.

 

 

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