STILLWATER — The disappointing end to Oklahoma State’s football season might end up being a program-changing positive for Cowboys fans. After OSU’s offense struggled in the final three games of the season, coach Mike Gundy hired Houston offensive coordinator Dana Holgorsen on Friday.
It’s unclear if Gundy will continue to call plays or if Holgorsen will assume that role. What is clear is this: Holgorsen, a Mike Leach protÃ©gÃ©e, will provide a needed kickstart to the Pokes’ passing game. In five seasons under Gundy, OSU has never averaged more than 250 passing yards per game. During the same time span, offenses coordinated by Holgorsen never averaged less than 369 passing yards. Under Gundy, OSU’s offenses have been far from inept. The Cowboys led the Big 12 in rushing for four straight seasons and have averaged 415.4 yards per game during his five seasons as head coach. Nonetheless, the Cowboys’ inability to pass when they had to became strikingly apparent down the stretch. And while quarterback Zac Robinson was limited by his shoulder injury, the Cowboys only had two games with 250 or more passing yards (279 at Texas A&M and 250 at Baylor) before Robinson injured his shoulder against Texas Tech. And the Pokes’ subpar passing numbers can’t be blamed on the loss of Dez Bryant, either. In the three games Bryant played last season, OSU passed for 135 yards against Georgia, 240 yards against Houston and 227 yards against Rice.