Blackmon: Simply The Best
By John Helsley
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With the OSU offense sputtering in the second half and Stanford ahead 14-0, Justin Blackmon did what he does best, striking for a 43-yard scoring play to get the Cowboys started.
First, however, Blackmon got mad.
“I knew we could play better,” Blackmon said. “If that takes me getting mad, I guess I get mad and go out there and do it.”
Blackmon got mad and soon enough the Cowboys got even.
And eventually, after a full 60 minutes of game time, they pulled ahead, for the first time at the end of overtime, good enough for a 41-38 win in a Fiesta Bowl classic.
Andrew Luck was everything he’s been billed to be, maybe more. And Brandon Weeden was great, too, throwing for 399 yards and three touchdowns, although he wasn’t getting near the love of Luck.
But in the end, the Fiesta Bowl was Blackmon’s Big Show.
Eight catches and 186 yards and three touchdowns, with Stanford committed to stopping him and Blackmon supposedly slowed by a bum leg caused by an infection.
He did it, too, with a receiving corps that featured Colton Chelf as the No. 2 option, as more explosive wideouts Tracy Moore and Michael Harrison played only limited roles due to apparent disciplinary issues. Did it with the running game going nowhere.
Blackmon averaged 23.3 yards a catch, scored on receptions of 43, 67 and 17. And he made the defining play of the game for OSU, a fourth-down grab on the game-tying drive in the final minutes of regulation, rendering Stanford’s fifth-year senior corner Corey Gatewood helpless on a quick slant.
“If I know it is one-on-one,” Weeden said, “I’m going to Blackmon 100 percent of the time.”
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