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Summer Preview: Oklahoma State Cowboys

Team: Oklahoma State Cowboys

Conference: Big 12 - South Division

Location: Stillwater, Oklahoma

2006 Record: 5-7 (3-5)

Coach: Mike Gundy

2007 Schedule:

Date Opponent
9.1 @ Georgia
9.8 Florida Atlantic
9.14 @ Troy
9.22 Texas Tech
9.29 Sam Houston State
10.6 @ Texas A&M
10.13 @ Nebraska
10.20 Kansas State
10.27 @ Oklahoma
11.3 Texas
11.10 Kansas
11.17 @ Baylor

In no particular order, 5 players of interest from Oklahoma State:

  1. Bobby Reid, QB, Jr.: Reid is good, damn good, and there's no doubting his talent, but Reid could be uneven at times last year. The evidence of course is what Red Raider fans saw where Reid was only 11-31 for a measly 145 yards (yes I know, the Cowboys rushed for 220 yards, but that doesn't excuse the completion percentage, and yes, I know that passes were dropped). Seems like the key is being at home. Reid's worst games were against Texas Tech and against the Longhorns where he had a quarterback rating of 62 and 79 respectively. The Texas loss was just a bad loss, but against Tech Reid was great in the first quarter, when the running game was really clicking, but in the 2nd half, Tech was able to take control of the game and Reid was merely pedestrian. OSU will regularly sub in sophomore QB, Zac Robinson, as a change of pace quarterback/running back/wide receiver and was pretty effective while he played. I like Reid, and I think he's a pretty good quarterback, but I think the bottom line is that Reid has to be more consistent, come to play every game.
  2. Adarius Bowman, WR, Sr.: Bowman is a big target and is a big-play receiver where he had 60 catches for 1,181 yards and 12 touchdowns (for those of you without calculators, that's almost 20 yards per catch). Bowman's best game was against Kansas where he had 13 catches for 300 yards and 4 touchdowns. Of course, Bowman's ability to be consistent is conversely related to Reid's ability to get the ball to him. Bowman only had 1 other game where he finished with over 100 yards receiving (against Houston) and had 4 games of less than 50 yards receiving: Missouri State, Texas A&M, Baylor, and Alabama. In order for OSU to take that next step that so many people are predicting, Bowman has got to find a way to get open and make himself a threat on every play.
  3. Tonga "Junior" Tea, DT, Jr.: The Cowboys lost all four starters on the defensive line to graduation (sound familiar?) and are counting on Tonga to fill in immediately. Tonga was a JC All-American at Snow Junior College and his former coach at Snow, Steve Coburn, said that, "Jr. Has a natural instinct for football. He reads quickly and can react. He has one of the best attitudes on the team. You can tell be watching him that he truly loves to play the game." Just by Tonga's size alone he'll make an impact. The depth at defensive line is as thin as another school in West Texas and despite all of the preseason hype for OSU, much of their success will depend on whether or not the defensive line is able to make plays.
  4. Patrick Lavine, LB, So.: For being a freshman last year, Lavine was pretty good, registering 70 tackles. Lavine's poorest conference games were against Kansas State and Texas Tech, he had games of 6 tackles or more against Kansas, A&M, Nebraska, Texas and Oklahoma. Fellow freshman linebacker Chris Collins was also pretty good early in the season, but Collins suffered an injury which kept him out of the last 7 games. Oklahoma State is going to be young on defense and they're going to be fairly inexperienced (except in the secondary where the return all 4 starters), but Collins and Lavine look to be pretty good players.
  5. Russell Okung, OT, So.: Okung is one of 3 returning offensive linemen for OSU. Okung started the last 3 games of the season, replacing an injured Corey Hilliard and will be an integral key to protecting Reid. Okung has good size (6'5" 290) and in addition to protecting Reid's backside, he'll also help an offense that rushed for over 200 yards a game last year.

In no particular order, key Oklahoma State Cowboys statistics:

  1. 35.23: How about 7th in the nation in scoring offense last year.
  2. 364.08: For a team that is being picked as a preseason favorite to win the Big 12 South, OSU was 89th in the nation in total defense. OSU lost their entire front 7. For reference purposes, Texas Tech was 58th in the nation.
  3. 208.00: OSU was incredibly effective rushing the ball, behind Dontrelle Savage, Keith Toston and Mike Hamilton which was good for 7th in the nation.
  4. 7.69: OSU was 8th in the nation for tackles for a loss, which means that OSU was aggressive, but gave up a ton of big plays.
  5. 24.62: The Cowboys were 8th in the nation in kickoff returns behind departed senior Grant Jones and returning sophomore Perrish Cox.

Previous Summer Previews:

Date Opponent
9.3 @ SMU Mustangs
9.8 UTEP Miners
9.15 @ Rice Owls
9.22 @ Oklahoma State Cowboys
9.29 Northwestern State Demons
10.6 Iowa State Cyclones
10.13 Texas A&M Aggies
10.20 @ Missouri Tigers
10.27 Colorado Buffaloes
11.3 @ Baylor Bears
11.10 @ Texas Longhorns
11.17 Oklahoma Sooners