Toughness. Effort. Discipline. No excuses. Finish.
Those are the goals Todd Monken has for the Oklahoma State offense each game. Not yards, points or any other statistics.
The Cowboy offense, on paper, appears to be doing just fine without former superstars Brandon Weeden and Justin Blackmon — and without starting quarterback Wes Lunt for nearly two games. OSU leads the nation in scoring offense (55.75 points per game) and total offense (659 yards per game) and ranks in the top 7 in passing offense (sixth, 359 yards per game) and rushing offense (seventh, 300 yards per game).
Those gaudy numbers don’t really matter to Monken.
“You can’t carry over points, you can’t carry over yards,” Monken said. “Stats are, really, for losers. You don’t want to be 600 (yards) one week and 200 the next, because you’re going to lose that game…
“Most of the time, statistics and numbers are all there just to make yourself feel better. We’re a 2-2 team, unfortunately. I think we’re a really good football team, and unfortunately we’re 2-2. But sometimes all those stats just allow you to say, ‘Hey, it’s not me. I’m not the reason. We’re not the reason. If everything was as good as we are…’ That’s a bunch of crap. That’s (a) loser’s mentality of looking at things.
“The bottom line is how we played last game, and what could we have done better? What calls could I have made better? Third-down calls? There’s probably 10 calls in there I wish I had back, so that’s what I have to look at. And our players need to look at it the same way. I said, ‘The moment you look at it a different way, it’ll bite you in the (butt).’”
Monken said he was pleased with OSU’s efficiency against Texas, a game that was played at a different pace than OSU is used to because both teams were more focused on running the football. The Cowboys tallied 36 points and were in position to score on eight of their 11 possessions, not including the one that ended the game.
“That was about as efficient as you could get,” Monken said. “But in the end, you’ve got to score more points, you can’t kick as many field goals. But do I think our guys are confident? Yes. Are we playing, not as well as I think we can, but as well as I was hoping we could? Sure. And I think our coaches have done a great job.”