OSU expects to have defensive success against the Big 12’s best quarterbacks, it must take advantage of the sack opportunities it gets.
The Cougars’ final offensive touchdown came on a play where Keenum was forced out of the pocket but kept the play alive long enough to make a throw into the end zone, which was tipped before ending up in Bryce Beall’s hands for the game-winning points.
"It’s frustrating,” redshirt freshman defensive tackle Nigel Nicholas said. "When you’re that close, it motivates you to get closer and closer until you get that sack.”
The OSU defense had four quarterback hurries against Houston but zero sacks, which has become an all-to-familiar problem. In 2008, the Cowboys had 31 hurries and just 15 sacks, finishing 105th in the nation.
By comparison, Texas, TCU, Oklahoma, Troy and Cincinnati were the top five teams nationally in sacks a year ago. Only Texas, with 76 hurries, had more hurries than OSU’s 31. But the Longhorns also had a nation’s-best 47 sacks to help catapult them to a 12-1 record.
"It’s still possible to get (40 sacks),” senior defensive end Jermiah Price said. "We just have to get off blocks, get up the field and make plays. When you get back there, you have to have success.”
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