Upset alert? OSU scoffs, impresses on road
October, 22, 2011
By David Ubben | ESPNDallas.com
The roadblocks for Oklahoma State reaching Bedlam undefeated with a chance to play for the national title are dwindling.
Missouri was a major one on Saturday. Plenty across the league, yours truly included, had the Cowboys on upset alert.
Oklahoma State's response? Another solid performance, exactly like this team has put together in every other game this season.
Brandon Weeden was sharp, unfazed by numerous drops from a solid receiving corps that could have frustrated less mature, less experienced passers. He finished with 338 passing yards and three scores. Joseph Randle ran for 138 yards and three touchdowns, scoring another on a 13-yard catch.
The defense gave up 463 yards of offense, but forced four turnovers, including a monster second half from Jamie Blatnick, who tipped two passes to teammates for interceptions and forced a fumble on a sack.
OSU's only turnover was costly. Weeden threw an interception to E.J. Gaines in the end zone and Gaines returned it to midfield, igniting the crowd with Missouri trailing by just 14. OSU's answer? Force another turnover deep in its own territory to snatch back momentum.
A strong sign. Like last week against Texas, OSU wasn't at its best. It still won convincingly on the road. This time, against a good opponent and good offense, the Cowboys took another step toward an unprecedented season. If you're coach Mike Gundy, that's exactly what you want to see.
Justin Blackmon suffered an injury and missed the entire second half, too.
"Justin got dinged in the head, and he's fine, but that young man's got too much in the future," Gundy told the FX sideline reporter in postgame. "We're just not going to put him back in there."
Gundy said he'd be back at practice this week.
So, too, will the rest of the Cowboys, with a perfect record and a lot to play for.