Houston 45, OSU 35: Thoughts and impressions
by Brandon Chatmon
--Turnovers make the difference. Houston capitalized on OSU’s, the Cowboys didn’t capitalize on Houston’s. Period, point blank. Not to mention Houston got their turnovers with the game on the line and OSU got their turnovers in the first half and didn’t take advantage.
–Some may look at this game and think OSU overlooked Houston. I disagree. Houston is a very good football team and they have a great offense with one of the best quarterbacks in the nation at the helm.
–This is going to sound crazy… but I don’t think the defense was horrible. I think they struggled early but Houston had a extremely creative offense and as the game went on, OSU’s defense started getting stops. The defense gave up about what I expected them to. One touchdown came right after a OSU turnover deep in Cowboys territory and another TD came directly off an OSU turnover. That’s 14 of Houston’s 45 points right there. I expected OSU to give up around 30 points and score 45 plus to win. Houston has a creative, explosive offense with a quarterback who runs it with confidence.
–OSU’s offense needs to play with more urgency. Seemed like Zac Robinson didn’t starting running the football until he needed to and they didn’t seem to really start trying to get the ball to Dez Bryant until they were behind. They should be trying to knock teams out right away. I think there’s a hesitation in using Zac to run the ball early in games for fear of injury but I don’t think you can play that way. If Zac gets hurt you have to deal with it but you can’t hold things back until you must make a play. Try to dominate from the opening snap and whatever happens, happens.
–OSU lost Hunter but Beau Johnson and Keith Toston filled in fairly well. Obviously you don’t just replace a Kendall Hunter but those two played well enough for OSU to pull it out.
–Josh Cooper and Justin Blackmon each made plays in the fourth quarter when the Cowboys needed them to. A great sign for the future, and even better, both players said it was good to make plays but they were both extremely disappointed it came in a loss, so it essentially meant nothing to them. It was clear both would rather have last week’s stats (zero catches) and a win than make some plays and take an L.
–The Cowboys pass rush still needs to improve. OSU was put in a position, especially early on, where they felt they had to blitz to get pressure, then Houston would hit them with a screen pass for big yardage. The solution to that problem… a better pass rush. Time for those D-ends to step up.
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