Oklahoma State Cowboys: Keys To The Season, Top Game, Top Transfer, Fun Stats
Oklahoma State Cowboys: Key To The 2022 Offense
Keep on running.
Oklahoma State got into problems when the turnovers started flowing, but there isn’t a problem with interceptions like the stats might suggest.
Spencer Sanders gave up seven interceptions in the two games against Baylor, and the other five were spread out over the rest of the season weren’t that big of a deal. He’s great when he’s on the move for the ground attack, and the offense is even stronger when the backs are involved.
Oklahoma State ran 620 times – over 44 times per game – and it all worked in the system. That kept the chains moving, that kept the defense rested, and that controlled games.
Running well matters.
Oklahoma State was 7-0 when it hit 180 yards or more, and the team has won 15 straight going back to 2019 when it hits that mark.
Oklahoma State Cowboys: Key To The 2022 Defense
Keep the pass rush rolling.
Getting into the backfield is nothing new for the Cowboys, but they took things up several notches last year with the pass rush in the country.
How good was it? Taking out the weird 2020 season with so many uneven schedules, you have to go back to 2014 Utah for time anyone averaged four sacks or more over a full season.
Pitt averaged 3.86 sacks per game, Alabama 3.8, and no one else averaged more than 3.31. Oklahoma State averaged four per game, and it wasn’t like it came in waves.
Sure, there were times when the attack dogs didn’t hunt – like in the 55-3 win over Kansas – but the production was spread out nicely with three or more in nine games.
There’s a new defensive coordinator, but there’s still a loaded batch of linemen back. The big plays have to be there.
Oklahoma State Cowboys: Key Player To The 2022 Season
RB Dominic Richardson, Jr.
Jaylen Warren ran for 1,216 yards and 11 touchdowns last season.
Chuba Hubbard had a 2,000-yard season, Justice Hill ran for over 3,500 career yards, Chris Carson has turned out to be a solid NFL back, Joseph Randle ran for over 1,400 yards in the 2012 season, Kendall Hunter ran for close to 1,600 yards in 2010, and on and on and on.
Now it might be Richardson’s turn.
He’s been effective when given a chance, but he had to wait his turn after being a good part of a rotation.
210 pounds, fast, and with a whole lot of tread on the tires, if he’s good enough to come up with an effective 200 carries, the offense will work just fine.
Oklahoma State Cowboys: Key Transfer
LB Xavier Benson, Jr.
The 6-2, 224-pounder is about to make a whole lot of tackles as one of the replacements for 225-pound, 408-tackle, heart-and-soul linebacker Malcolm Rodriguez.
Benson started his career at Texas Tech and rolled up 57 tackles in his first full season on the field, sat out the 2020 campaign, turned into a tackling machine in the JUCO ranks, and now he has the potential to be the team’s leading tackler.
Oklahoma State Key Game To The 2022 Season
at Baylor, Oct. 1
Four inches from the pylon. Four inches.
It was probably a wee bit more than that, but Dezmon Jackson was just that close to pulling the Big 12 Championship out of the fire and possibly putting Oklahoma State into the College Football Playoff.
The Cowboys won the first meeting earlier in the season – which, as it turned out, probably kept Baylor out of the CFP debate – but the Big 12 loss made it a third defeat to the Bears in five games.
This time around it’s the conference opener for the Cowboys, and they get a week off while the Bears are dealing with a road trip to Iowa State.
There’s still a trip to Oklahoma late in the season, and there are still a whole lot of Big 12 showdowns to deal with. A loss in Waco would be a problem.
Oklahoma State Cowboys: 2021 Fun Stats
– Sacks: Oklahoma State 57 for 386 yards – Opponents 17 for 107 yards
– OSU 2nd Quarter Scoring: 151 – OSU 3rd Quarter Scoring: 58
– 4th Down Conversions: OSU 7-of-13 (54%) – Opponents 8-of-27 (30%)