In a year of COVID-19 and football craziness, Oklahoma State and Kansas State are at the top of the Big 12.
The Cowboys on the road after a tough loss last week face a Kansas State team that has surprised the league this year.
It didn’t start pretty, the Cowboys held scoreless in the first half. And even the comeback wasn’t gorgeous football it was still a glorious sight for fans to behold.
The Cowboys finished with just 256 yards to the Wildcats’ 370, but edged out with the conference win, 20-18.
First Takeaway: Starters Started Dropping Like Flies
Coach Gundy had to play a bit of musical chairs today.
Early reports said that Tylan Wallace and Safety Kolby-Harvell Peel out for the game, something everyone on Twitter knew but somehow the announcers didn't. LD Brown did play despite early reports he would be out.
Then, right tackle Teven Jenkins goes down injured in the first quarter, only to have his replacement limp off the field later in the half.
The offensive line is critical to the Cowboys ability to make plays, especially with Spencer Sanders who likes to hold onto the ball in the pocket as long as he can.
Defense will be critical with all the injuries on the o-line this game.
Not the same lineup today, evident in the style of play, but it’s good to know the Cowboys are still able to finish out the game on top.
Second Takeaway: Even With Good Defense, You Still Have To Create Offense To Win
That’s the first half total yard comparison, the Cowboys are on the losing side.
OSU entered the second half trailing 12-0, leaving only one question: Where is the offense?
Yes, injuries and not playing Wallace definitely made an impact, but this is a strong offense that still has the keys to create. It took until the third quarter for OSU to put any points on the board, but once they did, they took advantage of the opportunity.
From trailing 12-0 in the first half to outscoring Kansas State 20-6 in the second half, including stopping a 2-point conversion that would have tied the game, it’s clear OSU has the drive to win.
In a game expected to be a showing of two strong defenses, it showed on the scoreboard. OSU’s defense has been outstanding this season, sometimes making it more of a game than the offensive side.
Then on a glorious turnover, the ball is stripped from the wildcats and Jason Taylor II takes the ball for a touchdown late in the fourth. And as the clock ticked down and KSU was driving with under two minutes, an interception.
Thank you, defense, for the help on the scoreboard.
Third Takeaway: The Energy Really Matters
With zero points in the first half, sometimes you just need a burst of energy.
Despite early results of no LD Brown in the game, it is, for the Cowboys at least, a very good thing that he played today.
Brown finished with 15 carries for 110 yards,
The first Cowboy touchdown came with 7:30 left in the third quarter, a much-needed toss to freshman Brennan Presley.
Between senior leadership from Brown and the ability to finish strong from freshman Presley, the Cowboys have a line of experience in tough situations that will serve them well.
Image Credit: OSU Athletics