Playing is Stillwater is already difficult. Oklahoma State is quietly proving to be a Big 12 title contender, so how did we hold on? Here are a few takeaways from today’s game.
Offense started slow, but got hot quickly
Things looked pretty bleak through the first few drives of the game. Texas Tech was held to three straight three and out’s, and found themselves down 14-0 real quick. After that, they had 4 straight drives for a touchdown to finish out the first half.
We found a run game
Not only did we have a longer time of possession and more run plays than Oklahoma State, but at halftime we had more rushing yards than we average per game (100+ excluding Mahomes). Whether it’s Felton running between the tackles, or Stockton bouncing it around the outside, they keep finding a way to keep moving the sticks and keep the drives alive.
Defenses are starting to figure Mahomes out
Opposing teams are starting to figure out that if you put pressure on Mahomes, you put pressure on our entire offense. If Mahomes gets flustered in the pocket, he starts forcing ill-advised throws. That was the story of the first 3 drives of the game. Once our run game got started, things got a little better. However, Oklahoma State had our number early on. Eventually Mahomes got going, but he certainly struggled to start the game. We all know that when Mahomes gets rolling, you can’t really stop him, you can just slow him down.
Our offense and defense finally showed up in the same game
One of the biggest complaint of our fans coming into this game was “why can’t our offense and defense be functional in the same game?” Well, for starters, no team is perfect. We can’t expect our offense to score on every drive, and we can’t expect our defense to stop the opposing team on every drive. That’s just not going to happen.
Minus the start of the game (are you noticing a theme?) when we were facing an early 14 point deficit, it seemed as if our offense and defense were feeding off each other’s energy. For once in what seems like forever, we actually scored after a defensive stop.
Today’s performance by either side wasn’t perfect by any means. Defense still had blown responsibilities and the offense still had missed opportunities. For the most part, I can’t complain.
Love-hate relationship with trick plays
This game seemed to have everything. Including ANOTHER fake punt, a triple pitch deep ball, and a GUTSY onside kick. I hate watching trick plays because my heart hurts afterwards. However, I have to give it up to Kliff and our players because when we took the risk, we executed successfully. Unfortunately, we didn’t end up scoring many points off of these plays, but it kept out defense off the field which limited OSU’s time of possession.
It’s still a loss, but it was one heck of a fight
Eventually, we have to turn moral victories into actual victories. I’m tired of these “we lost but we played good” story-lines, but you have to tip your cap to Tech’s effort today. Mahomes started slow and the defense gave up a bunch of points, but we still had a chance to win.