DALLAS — Turns out Purdue is what we thought it was, and the Heart of Dallas Bowl was what we thought it would be.
Oklahoma State's 58-14 domination at the Cotton Bowl Tuesday featured virtually no uncertainty.
But now comes an interesting and intriguing offseason for the Cowboys, There's an offensive coordinator to be hired, at least one key player to decide if it's time to jump to the NFL and potentially another three-man quarterback competition to be staged.
“Who knows what's going to happen?” receiver Charlie Moore said. “I know (coach Mike) Gundy will take care of us, and we'll have it all figured out pretty soon.”
Such as, who will be OSU's next offensive coordinator?
Tuesday, it was Gundy and friends, who directed an offense that rolled up 524 yards and set a record for the most points scored in a bowl game played at the Cotton Bowl.
But moving forward, Gundy said he has no timetable on finding a replacement for Todd Monken, who left OSU last month to become the head coach at Southern Miss. And if recent history is any indication, Gundy could indeed take his time. Two years ago, he didn't hire Monken to replace Dana Holgorsen until February.
Gundy stressed again, though, that the Cowboys will continue to run the Air Raid spread offense. It's a system that has produced explosive results the past three seasons, both with the star pass-catch duo of Brandon Weeden and Justin Blackmon and a 2012 edition that needed three starting quarterbacks and absorbed injuries to several skill players on offense.
“Is it an important hire? Yes, it is an important hire,” Gundy said. “But our principles and philosophies are going to stay the same.”
Which leads us to the quarterback carousel that could, once again, turn into a spring quarterback derby. All three — Clint Chelf, J.W. Walsh and Wes Lunt — played and contributed to a passing offense that compiled 311 yards.
Chelf earned bowl MVP honors in his fifth consecutive start to close the season, completing 17 of his 22 passes for 197 yards and three touchdowns in nearly three quarters.
Walsh threw a 16-yard touchdown pass to Jeremy Seaton out of his short-yardage package in the second quarter and later directed two scoring drives, including a 37-yard rainbow touchdown pass to Blake Webb to make the score 55-7.
And starter-turned-third-teamer Wes Lunt saw his first game action since sustaining a concussion against Kansas State on Nov. 5, completing one of his three throws for 12 yards while OSU ran out the clock.
After the game, though, Gundy said Chelf would take the first snap of team drills during spring football. And Chelf plans to keep it that way.
“I'm ready to be the starter,” Chelf said. “Coach Gundy said (it). When we trot out there in the spring, I don't plan on losing the job.”
Does that ultimately mean Walsh or Lunt transfers?
And who will Chelf — or whoever quarterbacks the Cowboys in 2013 — hand the ball to?
After the game, All-Big 12 running back Joseph Randle, who totaled 66 yards on 17 carries, was again mum about whether he will return to OSU for his senior season or enter the NFL Draft. If Tuesday was Randle's last game as a Cowboy, he will finish his career in the top 10 in OSU history in rushing yards, rushing touchdowns and points.
And what does defensive coordinator Bill Young's future hold?
Last month, he was noncommittal about how much longer he will coach. Tuesday, he assured he wants to continue.
But Young's defense, which was much-maligned after poor performances in its final two regular-season games, finished the season strong, using its speed and opportunistic ways to snag five turnovers and hold the Boilermakers scoreless until the waning seconds of the third quarter.
OSU closed 2012 — opened 2013, actually — with an expected blowout victory against an overmatched Big Ten squad.
Now comes the interesting part.