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Oklahoma State football: Why the Cowboys can't follow a Mountaineer model against Oklahoma

OKLAHOMA STATE AT OKLAHOMA — The Cowboys will unleash the same offense on Oklahoma that burned the Sooners last week at West Virginia. The weapons, however, are quite different, and that might not be a bad thing.
BY GINA MIZELL Published: November 23, 2012

NORMAN — Flashing his signature wide smile, Isaiah Anderson recalled the unique proposition he brought to Oklahoma State offensive coordinator Todd Monken earlier this week.

“How about you put me at running back?” the speedy wide receiver asked.

Anderson wasn't completely joking.

He had watched West Virginia receiver Tavon Austin torch Oklahoma for 344 yards rushing — yes, rushing — in one element of an offensive game plan that saw the Mountaineers roll up 778 yards and 49 points in the near-upset in Morgantown.

OSU, of course, runs the same system, which was installed by WVU coach Dana Holgorsen during his one season as the offensive coordinator in Stillwater. So did the Mountaineers effectively show the Cowboys how an explosive spread offense can attack the Sooners, just in time for Saturday afternoon's Bedlam matchup at Owen Field?

Monken isn't exactly sold.

“What you take from (that game) is Tavon Austin's a hell of a player,” Monken said. “That's what I took from it. It's like, ‘Does he have a younger brother or something?'”

The WVU and OSU offenses follow the same general philosophies and style. They play at a fast tempo and throw the football around. They've both been wildly productive, ranking in the top 10 nationally in passing, scoring and total offense.

But there are key personnel differences between the two units.

The Cowboys have been more balanced, with the dynamic and durable Joseph Randle, and now a healthy Jeremy Smith, in the backfield. Last year's Bedlam game provided the perfect example, as both tallied more than 100 rushing yards in OSU's 44-10 rout.

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