Texas Tech Opponent Prospectus // Oklahoma St. Cowboys

2009 Texas Tech Opponent Prospectus

Game 1: North Dakota Fighting Sioux // Game 2: Rice Owls // Game 3: Texas Longhorns // Game 4: Houston Cougars // Game 5: New Mexico Lobos // Game 6: Kansas State Wildcats // Game 7: Nebraska Cornhuskers // Game 8: Texas A&M Aggies // Game 9: Kansas Jayhawks // Game 10: Oklahoma St. Cowboys

It seems that the preseason question of the year is if Oklahoma State is the 2008 version of the Texas Tech Red Raiders. I've mentioned before that I'm not completely sold on Oklahoma St., despite the fact that I do beleive they may be the most offensively well-balanced team in the Big 12.

Join me after the jump for a closer look at Oklahoma St.

General Information

Opponent Oklahoma State University
Nickname Cowboys
Location Stillwater, OK
Enrollment 23,307
Conference Big 12
Head Coach Mike Gundy
2008 Record 9-3 (5-3)
Starters Returning/Lost 14/8
Blogs None
Links 2009 Media Guide
2009 Game Day Guide


Statistics

Statistic Oklahoma State Texas Tech
Pass Offense 242.23 (38) 413.15 (1)
Rush Offense 245.46 (8) 117.84 (94)
Total Offense 487.69 (6) 531.00 (4)
Scoring Offense 40.77 (9) 43.77 (3)
Pass Efficiency 164.71 (5) 158.76 (9)
Sacks Allowed 1.23 (17) 1.00 (4)
Pass Defense 267.69 (109) 242.23 (94)
Rush Defense 137.85 (52) 140.38 (61)
Total Defense 405.54 (93) 382.62 (79)
Scoring Defense 28.08 (76) 27.85 (74)
Pass Efficiency Defense 130.81 (74) 130.56 (72)
Sacks 1.15 (107) 2.62 (18)
Tackles For Loss 5.15 (87) 4.85 (95)
Turnover Margin 0.38 (35) 0.62 (22)


Top Returners

Category Player
Rushing Kendall Hunter (241 / 1,555 yds / 16 TD)
Passing Zac Robinson (204-314 / 3,064 yds / 25 TD / 10 Int)
Receiving Dez Bryant (87 rec. / 1,480 yds / 19 TD)
Tackles Andre Sexton (100)
Sacks Jeremiah Price (3.0)
Interceptions Perrish Cox (2)


A Few Things

  1. What Worries Me: Here's the thing. Oklahoma St. should be improved this year and I can understand how folks think that OSU is going to be this year's version of Texas Tech. I can't base any of my thoughts on OSU on something rational and I wouldn't be surprised to see the Cowboys prove me wrong, but I still can't get it out of my head that OSU just didn't show up against Texas Tech, a team that many thought up until that time, were contemporaries. I can understand the losses to Oklahoma and Oregon, but not even showing up bothers me. Maybe I should just let it go, but it's stuck with me through the offseason.
  2. Balanced and Explosive Offense: We talked in the Kansas prospectus about the Jayhawk trio and there's no doubt in my mind that Oklahoma State's trio is superior. Zac Robinson, Dez Bryant and the workhorse of the offense, Kendall Hunter, are big-time players. I don't know if they'll surpass last year's offensive numbers, but they'll match them. The one thing that worries me is that all-world tight end, Brandon Pettigrew, has moved onto the NFL, which means that Robinson's second options is no longer available. In fact, Bryant had 87 catches last year, which was more Oklahoma State's three other pass catchers, Pettigrew (42), Damiam Davis (19) and Kendall Hunter (22). Pettigrew's possible replacements, Jamal Moseley and Wilson Youman, had a combined 6 catches last year.
  3. Play Making Defense Wanted: There's really not a Big 12 defense that played incredibly well last year, however, the Cowboys' defense was 93rd in the nation in total defense and was 109th in pass defense (more on that below). On top of that, OSU had serious trouble getting to any quarterback and was 107th in the nation at sacking the QB last year. The problem is that last year's unit had very little production and that also means there's very little production returning. I know that Bill Young tends to work miracles with defenses and to be honest, I think OSU has recruited very well over the years, but I'm not convinced that changing the defensive coordinator means that Oklahoma St. deserves to be a top 10 team, especially when the defense hasn't proven that it deserves this spot.
  4. Replacing Three-Fourths of a Secondary: Much like Texas Tech, OSU must replace both safeties and a cornerback (why is no one else talking about that?). Projected FS Lucien Antoine had 1 tackle last year and projected SS Victor Johnson had 19. Safety is always a big position to fill and considering OSU was less than stellar last year defending the pass, look for this to be an issue for Oklahoma St. this year.
  5. Spaced Out Schedule: The one thing that I like about Oklahoma State is that the Cowboys really don't have an incredibly tough stretch and they have eight games at home. Opening against Georgia and Houston at home should be relatively easy. the next big game comes against Texas, again, at home, with a week of Iowa State between the Horns and Texas Tech. Then another week against an inferior opponent in Colorado, and then Oklahoma. In other words, there's not this tough three game stretch like so many teams faced last year and there's no doubt that the schedule favors Oklahoma St.
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