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Oklahoma State report card: Up-and-down grades reflect Cowboys' shaky play

The Cowboys got a much-needed victory over TCU, but the game was marked by both big plays and shaky plays, and the grades reflect it.
by Berry Tramel Published: October 19, 2013

The Cowboys got a much-needed victory over TCU, but the game was marked by both big plays and shaky plays, and the grades reflect it.


Mike Gundy said he feared TCU's return game. The Horned Frogs had returned two kickoffs for touchdowns and led the Big 12 with a 30.3-yard average. TCU also was averaging 14.1 yards on punt returns. But the Cowboys produced the big returns – Josh Stewart's school-record 95-yard punt return and Brandon Sheperd's 50-yard kickoff return, which set up OSU's final TD. Meanwhile, none of OSU's five punts were returned, and TCU's four kickoff returns averaged 21.5 yards, with B.J. Catalon's 32-yarder the longest.


Chelf's first throw – a floater easily intercepted by Kevin White – made you wonder if he would see the field again this season. But the Mikes (Gundy and Yurcich) went back to Chelf, and he made some plays. Still, Chelf completed just 10 of 25 passes. Some of that is because OSU threw downfield much more with Chelf. But if the Cowboys go with Chelf, they need more efficiency. J.W. Walsh was shaky enough to get pulled, but in his 18 minutes, OSU made eight first downs. In Chelf's 42 minutes, OSU made 12 first downs.


It would be hard to find two more diverse-colored uniforms. The Cowboys wore all bright orange – helmets, jerseys, pants. TCU wore vibrant white pants and jerseys, with a shiny purple helmet. Great color contrast. So why did both teams have trouble throwing the ball to the correct color? Each team threw three interceptions, and with just a little better hands, there could have been more.


TCU five times faced third down needing less than four yards to convert. The Frogs made it only twice, and one of those was on Trevone Boykin's scramble on the last play of the game. The Cowboys consistently thwarted TCU's run game. The Frogs' tailbacks combined for just 78 yards on 28 carries.

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by Berry Tramel
Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The Oklahoman,...
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