“We had to pick our places when to pressure and when not to,” Cowboy defensive coordinator Glenn Spencer said. “And we had some injuries on our side, so that meant it totally disrupted our sub packages. ... But I'm proud of their effort.”
And lastly, the Cowboys caused turnovers. The opportunistic defense of a couple seasons ago is back and as good as ever. Saturday, it came up with three turnovers — two interceptions and one fumble recovery — and pushed its takeaway total to 15 in four games.
“We're getting the ball on the ground,” Gundy said. “We're making catches.”
Being able to pick off those passes is something the Cowboys worked on diligently during the offseason. After dropping a bunch of would-be interceptions last season, they wanted to make sure they didn't do that again this season.
That and many other things have come together for this defense.
“Great coaching, unbelievable effort on the perimeter, guys up front played their butts off,” Cowboy linebacker Shaun Lewis said. “It was just a team effort.”
When the Red Raiders rallied at the end of the first half, the Cowboys came out in the second half and shut the door. Texas Tech's first three possessions after halftime went punt, punt, interception, and it allowed the OSU offense to build the lead back to three scores.
“I feel like we've got this thing rollin',” Lewis said. “It was going to happen eventually; our offense has always been good.”
And the defense gave the offense a chance to get its bearings, to get stabilized, to get going.
Who know where this all leads for the Cowboys, but Saturday night, the Red Raiders were glad when the road led out of town.
They were more than happy to see the Cowboys get the heck out of Dodge.
Jenni Carlson: Jenni can be reached at (405) 475-4125. Like her at facebook.com/JenniCarlsonOK, follow her at twitter.com/jennicarlson_ok or view her personality page at newsok.com/jennicarlson.