A lackluster performance in a 20-14 victory against Kansas yielded a lackluster report card for Oklahoma State. Play calling was bad. Ditto for enthusiasm. Good thing Quinn Sharp and the lesser-heralded receivers came to play.
PLAY CALLING: D
Not one of Todd Monken's better days. The OSU offensive coordinator admitted as much. His offense never seemed to find a rhythm or a spark. The play calls were pedestrian, and so were the results. And worse, late in the game when the Cowboys surprisingly found themselves on the ropes, they opted to rely on J.W. Walsh's arm. Not until Monken called a few runs for Walsh were the Cowboys able to do enough to survive.
SHARP PLAY: D
The Cowboys played like they'd been off for two weeks. And they played like they'd been watching video of a really bad Kansas team during their down time. Their play was lackluster. Good thing the Jayhawks were, too.
QUINN SHARP: A
Give the OSU kicker/punter player-of-the-game honors, which might help explain why the Cowboys only beat the lowly Jayhawks by a touchdown. Sharp's 70-yard punt in the first half dribbled out of bounds at the Kansas 8-yard line and flipped the field for the Cowboys. Then, in the second half, he made a touchdown-saving tackle in kick coverage. If a 52-yard field goal attempt doesn't go wide at the end of the first half, he might've had the best day of his career.
An overcast afternoon turned downright awful when strong thunderstorms rolled into Lawrence half an hour into the game. The rain eventually abated, but dark skies remained for the rest of the game.
RUN GAME: C
Where was the Joe Randle who ran for 199 yards vs. Texas? The Cowboy tailback managed only 80 yards, and worse, he had only 2.8 yard a carry. Had it not been for Walsh, who had 49 yards on nine carries, the Cowboys would've only had 67 yards rushing on 35 carries, a paltry 1.9 yards per carry.
RUN DEFENSE: C
The Cowboys' run defense early would've earned a B as they held the Jayhawks in check through three quarters. But the run defense late deserves a failing grade. The Cowboys' defensive front looked gassed late, and that led to some big Jayhawk runs. If OSU isn't going to platoon and play more guys on the defensive line, Kansas won't be the last team to gain yards in chunks late in games.