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Oklahoma State report card: Cowboys' grades drastically improve in win over Kansas State

by Jenni Carlson Published: October 5, 2013

Much better grades this week for the Cowboys, after their 33-29 victory over Kansas State. High marks to the OSU defense, especially Shaun Lewis, Caleb Lavey and Tyler Johnson.

TIMELY PLAYS: A

When Oklahoma State needed to make plays, the Cowboys came through. The defense came up with interceptions on Kansas State's last two possessions, the first by Shaun Lewis and the second by Daytawion Lowe. And the offense scored points on its last two drives. Down by six points, J.W. Walsh and Co. put together their best drive of the day, going 75 yards in six plays and finishing with a 7-yard touchdown pass from Walsh to Charlie Moore. Then on the next possession, it was Ben Grogan's turn to perform, hitting a 28-yard field goal.

LINEBACKERS: A

The Cowboys got big-time play out of starters Shaun Lewis and Caleb Lavey. Lewis, who led the team in tackles with eight, forced a fumble, recovered a fumble and intercepted a pass that set up the game-winning touchdown. He also had a big tackle of K-State quarterback Daniel Sams with a minute left in the game; he kept Sams inbounds and cost the Wildcats precious time. Lavey had seven tackles, including two for a loss.

TYLER JOHNSON: A

The converted defensive end had the best game of his Cowboy career. He had seven tackles, including two sacks. He also forced a fumble.

J.W. WALSH: B

Overall, the Cowboy quarterback had an average day, going 24 of 28 for 245 yards and one touchdown, but when the Cowboys needed him to step up, he was big time. With the Cowboys trailing by six in the fourth quarter and needing to go the length of the field, Walsh was almost flawless. He went 4 of 5 on the drive for 59 yards, including the 7-yard game-winning touchdown to Charlie Moore. It was Walsh's best sequence of the day. Even though he had a few passes that were thrown behind or low of receivers, his receivers could've helped him a little more. For starters, Walsh threw the best deep ball of his Cowboy career, and Josh Stewart dropped it.

WIDE RECEIVERS: C

A less-than-stellar day for a group with tons of potential. They were playing a bit shorthanded, going without Blake Jackson, Blake Webb and Austin Hays. But even without those receivers, the guys who played needed to be more sure handed. Yes, they did their jobs late, but having the dropsies for a second consecutive week isn't a good sign.

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by Jenni Carlson
Columnist
Jenni Carlson, a sports columnist at The Oklahoman since 1999, came by her love of sports honestly. She grew up in a sports-loving family in Kansas. Her dad coached baseball and did color commentary on the radio for the high school football...
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