Oklahoma State Cowboys College Football Preview 2021: Defense
– There were some meltdown moments, but the defense allowed 21 points or fewer six times, was No. 1 in the country at third down stops, and the pass rush was among the best in the Big 12.
A little more consistency would be a plus, but there are plenty of positives to build on after allowing 379 yards and 23.5 points per game. Seven starters are expected to be back along with a whole lot of talented depth, with the stars in …
– The secondary – it should be outstanding. The Cowboys are loaded at safety with three good ones, led by Tre Sterling and his 74 tackles from last year along with Kolby Harvell-Peel and Tanner McCalister each with all-star upside.
The corner situation isn’t quite as strong without Rodarius Williams, but Jarrick Bernard-Converse is a good-sized all-around defender who can hit. It’s a young group, but it’s talented.
– The linebacking pros gets back leading tackler Malcolm Rodriguez – he made 82 tackles and three sacks with seven tackles for loss – but big hitter Amen Ogbongbemiga is done.
235-pound Devin Harper isn’t Ogbongbemiga, but he’s a good veteran who’ll step in and should be among the team’s leading tacklers after coming up with 37 stops.
– The line is going through a few changes, but it’ll be better this year. Trace Ford and Tyler Lacy are good pass rushers – Ford is a quick playmaker and Lacy brings more thump – and the front is set at tackle around a deep group starting with Israel Antwine and Sione Asi as the 300+ pound anchors.