The Cowboys got a new starting QB tonight due to Daxx Garman's concussion symptons, and showed some fight, keeping it within two scores for a fair amount of the game.
But a couple of huge defensive whiffs early and some expected ultra conservative/predictable play calling doomed OSU to a 5th consecutive loss.
On a night when Baylor fully cooperated with penalties and turnovers, Gundy/Yurcich play called the first two thirds of the game NOT to get blown out. This worked to some extent, but still left the Cowboys in a position where they needed to air it out a bit to attempt the comeback, and Mason Rudolph made a couple of freshman mistakes.
Still, OSU put up 28 points and managed almost 400 yards of total offense. This was the first sign of life for a team that had pretty much gone to sleep offensively since halftime of the Kansas game, and accompanied the highly anticipated inaugural appearance of Mason Rudolph.
Needless to say, we are all a bit more interested now in Bedlam.
However, this game did leave us with more questions.
Once again, Tyreek Hill covered more punts in the first half than he had offensive touches. He eventually led the Cowboys in rushing with 10 carries for 52 yards, but it took until the 4th quarter for Hill to see consistent activity.
But the million dollar inquiry has to do with Mason Rudolph. Why in the world did it take all season to burn his redshirt?
He looked comfortable and poised in the pocket. He made two poor decisions, but had presence behind a bad offensive line, and actually completed several intermediate throws. He had several nice throws and catches with Washington, Glidden, and Shepherd. His mobility definitely made a difference on several occasions, and he wasn't easy to bring down. Is there any question about who should start in Bedlam? Of course neither Gundy nor Yurcich will commit to that.
I realize Gundy was trying to save the redshirt, but why do that if he's a better QB than Daxx? There were plenty of rumors that Rudolph was actually the 2nd QB coming out of spring and fall camps. At this level of football, the level that Boone has paid for, you coach and play to win. You put your best players on the field. Gundy is still operating as if OSU can't win every season.
The defense left some things to be desired. The two long TD's to start the game were awful, and the tackling was pretty poor, but they did produce a couple of interceptions. After hitting the two long passes, the Bears proceeded to gouge the Cowboys for over 300 yards rushing, although I'll point out that the defense was on the field for 90 plays, while the offense mustered only 68.
But the offensive play calling was borderline putrid. I know you want to get the young QB comfortable, but attempting only 14 passes through three quarters in a game where you are constantly behind by 2-3 scores? The running game game stayed inside until the 4th quarter. For a team with nothing to lose, they sure acted like they had everything to lose, which is normal Gundy.
Gundy said in the post game that the team started slow. I'm just going to leave that right there.
Bedlam is definitely intriguing now, as Rudolph could definitely have success with his mobility, and 2015 is looking up offensively as long as changes are made, and one of those changes is Gundy staying the fuck out of the offensive scheming and play calling.
I'm not going to review this game any further. I think it was pretty clear what we saw tonight, no real mysteries.
Everyone travel safe for Thanksgiving...enjoy some football (TCU/TX could be fun)...and get ready for OSU's last shot at bowl eligibility. The Cowboys have some hoops coming up this week, so I will be eager to see Ford's crew against some better competition. As always...