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OKLAHOMA STATE FOOTBALL: The Quandry of JW

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We've seen good....we've seen bad....but no matter what, folks are split the same as stats and the eye test.

Brett Deering

Mark Travis (and yes, we miss him) did a wonderful job breaking down some of J.W. Walsh's perfomances in an attempt to give us some comfort...or not...about his upcoming stint as starter for the Cowboys in 2014.

Let's take a quick look at the raw stats.

DATE OPP RESULT CMP ATT CMP% YDS AVG TD INT RAT
9/1/12 Savannah St W 84-0 13 21 61.9 149 7.1 2 1 143.42
9/15/12 La.-Lafayette W 65-24 21 30 70 347 11.6 4 0 211.16
9/29/12 19 Texas L 36-41 18 27 66.7 301 11.1 2 1 177.34
10/13/12 @ Kansas W 20-14 18 29 62.1 255 8.8 1 1 140.41
10/20/12 Iowa St. W 31-10 32 47 68.1 415 8.8 1 0 149.28
8/31/13 + Mississippi St. W 21-3 18 27 66.7 135 5 0 0 108.67
9/7/13 @ UTSA W 56-35 24 27 88.9 326 12.1 4 0 239.2
9/14/13 Lamar W 59-3 17 30 56.7 181 6 1 1 111.68
9/28/13 @ West Virginia L 21-30 20 47 42.6 322 6.9 3 2 112.65
10/5/13 Kansas St. W 33-29 24 38 63.2 245 6.4 1 0 126
10/19/13 TCU W 24-10 9 18 50 115 6.4 0 2 81.45


These aren't his complete stats. I've included the games where he started or that he played the majority of the snaps.

Walsh is 9-2 in these games.

Averages 19-31 for 254 yds, 2 TD's and 1 INT.

But some of these are cupcakes or not complete games, so let's take out the patsies (Sav St, ULL, UTSA, Lamar) and TCU when Gundy yanked the short leash.

DATE OPP RESULT CMP ATT CMP% YDS AVG TD INT RAT
9/29/12 19 Texas L 36-41 18 27 66.7 301 11.1 2 1 177.34
10/13/12 @ Kansas W 20-14 18 29 62.1 255 8.8 1 1 140.41
10/20/12 Iowa St. W 31-10 32 47 68.1 415 8.8 1 0 149.28
8/31/13 + Mississippi St. W 21-3 18 27 66.7 135 5 0 0 108.67
9/28/13 @ West Virginia L 21-30 20 47 42.6 322 6.9 3 2 112.65
10/5/13 Kansas St. W 33-29 24 38 63.2 245 6.4 1 0 126









Now he's 4-2. Averages 22-36 for 279 yds, and borders on 1 TD and 1 INT per game. His yardage goes up but his scoring goes down?

I'm going to go down two paths here.

First, what most people believe....right now, Walsh is not going to carry the team with his arm. He can help the team. He can engineer a game winning drive. But short of being able to run the ball, he's not going to pull a "Weeden."

Second, his numbers were spectacular in 2012 (his second season studying under Todd Monken), and not so spectacular in 2013 (first year under Mike Yurci...Joe Wickli...Mike Gundy?)

Back to my first point...OSU has had ONE...EXACTLY ONE...QB that could carry the team with his arm.

And that QB had one of the most dominant college wide receivers to ever play the game. Two players on one side of the ball that could almost single-handedly take over a game. Just ask Kansas State and Stanford. Our expectations quickly became unreasonable.

To my second point...Walsh had a season to study under the best QB in Cowboys' history, then had a season under a 2nd year OC. That means an offense around him with the same experience.

Compare that to the circus that obviously was OSU's offensive chemistry in 2013.

Legos plus wannabe OC plus Gundy. Oh my. Throw in some injury issues on the offensive line, minus an NFL running back.

My opinion coming out of this? I fully expect to see a much better Walsh in 2014, a player much closer to 2012 than 2013.

That doesn't mean I think he will carry the team with his arm, but I do believe he will make a difference with his arm.

The biggest reason is point #2.

Yurcich has a year under his belt, and his main "antagonists" are gone. That's right, I used the plural.

Wickline is in Austin, and Chelf graduated.

Chelf an antagonist? Indirectly so, yes. When the coach has a viable option on the bench, the leash is that much shorter and the pressure on the starter is that much higher. Just look what happened to Chelf in the opener against Mississippi State.

By all accounts Walsh was clearly the superior QB in spring drills. Fall camp still has a story to tell, but I'd be pretty confident that J.W. is getting the vast majority of the snaps with the one's. I think it would take an extremely awful September for him not to be the starter at least a couple of games into October.

Walsh may not have the arm of Weeden, but he can most definitely have the arm of Zac.

Let's hope he finds a receiver that can help him make that difference.