Oct. 18, 2009
No. 14/12 Oklahoma State at Baylor
Sat., Oct. 24, 2009 :: 11:30 a.m CT :: Floyd Casey Stadium (50,000 cap.)
TV: Versus Network (Announcers TBA)
Radio: Cowboy Radio Network (Dave Hunziker, John Holcomb and Robert Allen)
Satellite Radio: XM Channel 231
Back To Baylor
The 14th-ranked Oklahoma State Cowboys begin the second half of the 2009 football season this weekend when they head to Waco to face Big 12 South rival Baylor. Kickoff is set for 11:30 a.m. It will be OSU's second morning kickoff of the season. The Cowboys' game at Texas A&M kicked at 11:40.
The Cowboys Quickly
Oklahoma State enters the Baylor game at 5-1 on the season and 2-0 in Big 12 play. Despite the still newness of league play, OSU heads to Waco as one of only two Big 12 schools undefeated in conference play. Texas is the other. OSU has won four straight games overall and though that streak is still modest, it is the nation's 11th longest winning streak. It is the seventh longest winning streak among BCS conference members.
The Oklahoma State-Baylor game will be televised nationally by VERSUS. OSU will be appearing on the network for the first time. The contest marks OSU's third straight on national television, following appearances on FSN (Texas A&M) and ESPN2 (Missouri). OSU began the season with an ABC appearance against Georgia.
The Road To Success
Oklahoma State heads to Waco having won five of its last eight Big 12 road games. Under Mike Gundy, the Cowboys lost seven of their first eight league games away from home (in 2005 and 2006) before turning the road corner.
Some quick facts worth noting:
OSU senior offensive lineman Russell Okung is the only offensive player among the 12 semifinalists announced for the Lombardi Award.
Quarterback Zac Robinson has passed the 9,000-yard mark in career total offense to rank among the Big 12's all-time leaders.
Oklahoma State leads the nation in fewest sacks allowed (two through six games). OSU has not allowed a sack since Sept. 12 vs. Houston.
Kicker Dan Bailey is coming off a 4-for-4 field-goal effort, including the first 50-plus boot (51) by a Cowboy since 2006. He is now 113-for-113 on career extra point attempts.
Cowboys And Bears
Oklahoma State holds a 15-12 series advantage in its all-time meetings with Baylor. The series dates back to 1914 when Oklahoma A&M picked up a 60-0 win in the first meeting. The Cowboys then lost nine straight to the Bears before picking up a victory in 1972. OSU is 12-1 against Baylor since joining the Big 12 Conference and currently riding a three-game winning streak in the series. OSU is 3-1 vs. Baylor under Mike Gundy, dating back to a 44-34 loss in Waco in 2005. Oklahoma State is 5-6 all-time in Waco with victories five times in its last six visits. The series is 1-1 on neutral fields, including a Cowboy victory over the Bears in the 1983 Bluebonnet Bowl in the Houston Astrodome. That game marked the first post-season win in the head coaching career of Jimmy Johnson. It was also Johnson's last game as the OSU head coach.
Baylor Alums, Sort Of
Oklahoma State head football coach Mike Gundy and offensive line coach/co-offensive coordinator Joe Wickline are former Baylor football staffers. Gundy spent the 1996 season in Waco before heading to the University of Maryland. Wickline was on the Bears staff in 1997 and 1998.
Back To Waco
Some quick facts regarding Oklahoma State's history with the Baylor Bears...
OSU has scored at least 24 points in every game against the Bears in Big 12 play.
OSU has reached the 30-point mark against Baylor in each of the last 10 games.
The Cowboys and Bears played just three times from 1941 to 1994.
Last year, OSU held Baylor to six points. It was the Bears' lowest point total in the series since 1914.
In Stillwater last year, Baylor freshman quarterback Robert Griffin set an NCAA record by going 155 passes before throwing his first interception. The old record of 138 had been held by OSU's Mike Gundy since 1986.
Last Year vs. Baylor
Baylor scored first for a 6-0 first-quarter lead, but the Cowboys responded with the game's final 34 points in the 34-6 victory. Oklahoma State led 28-6 at the half. The win improved OSU to 3-0 in Big 12 play and 6-0 on the season. The Cowboys accumulated a 457-204 advantage in total offense. It was a big day for Dez Bryant, who had 11 catches for 212 yards with two touchdowns. Zac Robinson was 13-of-20 passing for 238 yards with the two scores. He also rushed for 57 yards. Kendall Hunter led the Cowboys on the ground with 93 yards on 26 carries.
Last Time In Waco
OSU last visited Waco on Nov. 17, 2007, and it was a big day for Zac Robinson. He became the first OSU quarterback in 34 years to run for 100 yards three times in a season as he accumulated 144 in the 45-14 OSU win. Robinson set the school's single-season total offense record in Waco as his rushing/passing total climbed to 3,122 yards to break Josh Fields' mark. The win also assured OSU's bowl eligibility, leading to an eventual appearance in the Insight Bowl. OSU had 505 yards of total offense as Robinson also passed for 202 yards and OSU got 109 rushing yards from all-Big 12 running back Dantrell Savage.
Two To Start
The Cowboys are 2-0 for just the fourth time in the 14-year history of the Big 12 Conference and for the second straight year. Opening Big 12 play with a two-game winning streak has been a good omen for the Cowboys with the previous three 2-0 getaways leading to at least eight wins. OSU is 2-0 in consecutive Big 12 seasons for the first time.
Year Start Result Notable
1997 2-0 8-4 OSU's first bowl trip (Alamo) in nine years
2004 2-0 9-4 OSU's first Cotton Bowl trip since the 1940s
2008 2-0 9-4 OSU went to Holiday Bowl
2009 2-0 -- OSU is riding a four-game winning streak.
A win in Waco would improve OSU to 3-0 in Big 12 play for just the third time in the 14-year history of the conference. The Cowboys were also 3-0 in 1997 and last season when Oklahoma State also began Big 12 play with wins over Texas A&M, Missouri and Baylor.
Oklahoma State enters the Baylor game riding its second four-game winning streak under Mike Gundy. It is the second straight year that OSU has won at least four in a row as OSU opened 2008 with a 7-0 start. It also marks the fourth four-game winning streak of this decade. The Cowboys had seven-game winning streaks in 2008 and 2003 and won four straight in 2002.
The Six-Game Measuring Stick
Dating back to 1911, OSU has had a 5-1 or 6-0 start to a season 16 times, including eight times since 1984. OSU has been 6-0 three times. The Cowboys got off to a 5-0-1 start in 1932 and OSU started 5-1 on 12 occasions. On Saturday in Waco, OSU will be trying to match the fourth best seven-game record in school history.
OSU is 15-5 in its last 20 games, dating back to the 2007 Insight Bowl win over Indiana. It is the best 20-game stretch by the Cowboys since the 2002-2004 seasons when OSU had a 16-4 run under Les Miles. A win in Waco would improve the Cowboys to 8-3 in their last 11 Big 12 games. It would tie OSU's best 11-game run in the league since that same stretch under Miles that included three Big 12 wins to conclude 2002, a 5-3 record in 2003 and a 2-0 start in 2004.
Zac's Career vs. Baylor
Zac Robinson has been his typical efficient self in three career games against the Baylor Bears. Through the air, Robinson is 33-of-46 for 475 yards with four touchdowns and no interceptions. As a rusher, Robinson has carried the ball 40 times for 291 yards with three more scores.
The 9,000-Yard Man
Zac Robinson climbed to No. 8 in Big 12 history by moving past 9,000 yards in career total offense against Missouri. He has accumulated 9,225 yards. That total is an OSU record and moved him past Vince Young of Texas and up to No. 8 on the league's all-time list. Two current conference quarterbacks, Colt McCoy of Texas and Todd Reesing of Kansas, rank ahead of Robinson on the all-time top 10. Both of those quarterbacks have passed the 10,000-yard mark.
Zac Robinson became eighth quarterback in Big 12 history to reach 60 touchdown passes in a career when he teamed up with Hubert Anyiam on Saturday night. Robinson is tied for No. 8 on the career list with former Texas quarterback Major Applewhite. Robinson holds the OSU record for touchdown passes.
Zac's New Marks
Other notables for OSU's senior quarterback:
He remains second all-time to Mike Gundy with 7,530 career passing yards. Gundy accumulated 7,997 yards in his career.
He is No. 24 all-time at OSU with 1,705 rushing yards.
He has 22 career rushing touchdowns to rank No. 9 all-time at OSU. The only quarterback ahead of him is Tony Lindsay, who ran for 23 touchdowns from 1997 through the 2000 season.
He is No. 21 all-time at OSU with 132 career points.
His 82 touchdowns responsible for is ninth among active NCAA players.
His career passing efficiency of 154.49 is sixth in the NCAA
His 7.6 yards per play in his career rank fourth nationally.
Expect The Unexpected
With 2008 consensus All-America selection Dez Bryant having played in just three of OSU's six games, it would figure the Cowboys' big play ability through the air would be lacking. Instead, at the season's halfway point, OSU's passing attack, statistically speaking, is at least as explosive as before. In 13 games last season, OSU had 45 pass plays that covered at least 20 yards. Through six games, the current crop of Cowboys has reached more than half that total with 27 pass plays exceeding 20 yards. Bryant has accounted for seven of those plays in just three games, but eight other Cowboys have also contributed to the total.
Don't Forget Okung
Twice in his career, Russell Okung has tossed a shutout against the NCAA's sack leader. At Texas A&M's Von Miller entered the game as America's top pass rusher with nine sacks. Against Okung, he did not record a sack and had five tackles. In the 2007 Insight Bowl, Okung held Indiana's Greg Middleton, another NCAA sack leader, without a tackle. Okung is the only offensive player among the 12 semifinalists for the Lombardi Award. He anchors an offensive line that leads the nation with just two sacks allowed through six games.
The weight of OSU's rushing game has fallen on the shoulders of senior Keith Toston and the Texan has responded in a big way. Over the last two games, he has rushed for 217 yards on 50 carries with a touchdown and a two-point conversion. He has also accumulated 128 receiving yards in those games for 345 yards of offense. Against Missouri and Texas A&M, he had pass receptions of 40, 34 and 24 yards. His 168 receiving yards already assure him of the best receiving season of his career.
Keith Toston has now rushed for 2,004 yards in his career to rank No. 17 at OSU. He has scored 146 career points to rank No. 18 in that category. He enters the Baylor game with a career average of 5.9 yards per carry.
Active 2,000-Yard Rushers On Same Team
Keith Toston (2,004 career rushing yards) joins Kendall Hunter (2,355 career rushing yards) as Cowboy running backs to have eclipsed the 2,000-yard mark. Toston and Hunter are the first-ever duo in Oklahoma State history to have played together with over 2,000 rushing yards apiece.
And Now For Something Completely Different
With Dez Bryant and Kendall Hunter unavailable, OSU has turned to some new faces for offensive help and the mixture of familiar faces in new roles, redshirts and newcomers have formed a formidable offensive attack:
Hubert Anyiam has had the two best days of his career in the last two games. Against Missouri and A&M, he had a total of 13 catches covering 177 yards with two scores. His 119-effort against Missouri is just the second 100-yard receiving game by a Cowboy this season (Dez Bryant had 161 against Rice).
True freshman Tracy Moore had a 51-yard TD reception against A&M in what is OSU's longest scoring play of the season. He had a 20-yard reception against Missouri.
Dameron Fooks' three receptions in College Station included first-down grabs on third-and-nine and third-and-12.
Justin Blackmon had a career-long 32-yard catch to set up a touchdown in College Station and he hauled in a 22-yarder vs. Missouri.
Anyiam, Moore, Blackmon and Fooks entered the season with a combined total of three receptions (all by Anyiam). In 2009, they have caught 33 passes, including six touchdowns.
Zac Robinson has completed passes to 14 receivers this season after finding 15 all of last season.
For the second straight week, the Cowboy defense became the center of attention following a Big 12 win. Against Missouri, the Cowboys tossed a second-half shutout and that was only a small part of the story.
Missouri managed just 80 yards in the second half on 28 snaps.
The Cowboys picked off three passes thrown by Missouri quarterback Blaine Gabbert. He entered the game having tossed just two INTs in his career. It marked the second straight year in which the Cowboys picked off three passes against the Tigers.
The OSU defense scored its second touchdown of the season when Lucien Antoine ran back an interception 26 yards for a score.
Missouri was 0-for-7 on third-down conversions in the second half and 3-for-15 in the game.
The Tigers' last 10 possessions of the game resulted in three punts, three turnovers, twice they lost the ball on downs and twice a half ended.
Of those last 10 drives, one covered 49 yards, no other possession covered more than 14 yards.
OSU last blanked a Big 12 opponent for a half on Oct. 18, 2008, in a 34-6 win over Baylor when the Bears' TD came in the first quarter.
The Missouri performance came on the heels of the A&M game in which OSU held the Aggies 161 yards below their season average and picked up four sacks against a team averaging 1.5 allowed.
The four sacks at Texas A&M were the most by the Cowboys against a Big 12 foe since a Nov. 17, 2007, visit to Waco when Oklahoma State got to the Baylor quarterbacks five times.
OSU has at least one interception in five of the six games to date.
OSU has yet to allow a 100-yard rusher in 2009.