In this week's last Chalk Talk, we will look at some potential plays that Oklahoma State might use in Bedlam this Saturday. Rivalry games are perfect opportunities for offenses to unveil never-before-seen formations and plays -- why should Bedlam be any different? Today's key to success for beating OU is creativity. If they come out and play conservatively, such a strategy could spell disaster, and even if the Cowboys tried to mix things up in the latter half of the game, it might be too late. Conversely, a couple of gadgets here and there could be the difference in a game that features two very talented teams. So here we go -- here are three plays/ideas that OSU could use in Bedlam on Saturday:
Creativity in Bedlam
The flea flicker used to be a staple in OSU's erstwhile air raid offense from 2010 to 2011. During Dana Holgorsen's tenure here, the Cowboys probably averaged about one flea flicker a game. Holgorsen would use it exclusively out of the full house formation; the play's diagram would look something like this:
Under offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich, the flea flicker has looked different. Sure, they've used it in the traditional Holgorsen fashion, but they've also mixed in different formations and motions to disguise the play to the defense. Take their flea flicker against Kansas State, for instance:
A flea flicker is a great play, especially when the offense sets it up properly. As long as the offensive line can keep the pass rush off of the quarterback (not a guarantee, unfortunately), the flea flicker can steal big yards and change the momentum of the game.
The throwback screen has always been a thing of beauty; it’s one of those plays that, when executed correctly, makes you happy that football exists in the first place. The Cowboys have used this play many times over the past couple of years and it has been responsible for many a big play.
The throwback takes advantage of the over pursuit of a defense. Once the ball is thrown the first time, the defense can't help but flow to the ball; this usually leaves the throwback to the quarterback wide open. The play is so effective, it works even with a slower quarterback. Clint Chelf, for example, was no Mariota, but he ran it well in the Cowboys' 49-17 victory over the Baylor Bears in 2013.
Since Yurcich likes to get creative with his trick plays, why not take this to the next level? This example might be a tad bit idealistic, but we've been surprised before, right?
How awesome would a play like this be? A successful Rudolph-to-Carr-to-Rudolph-to-Washington trick play could lead to BPS literally blowing off its foundation.
Walsh & Rudolph
Oklahoma State head coach Mike Gundy has said before that they have experimented with two quarterback formations in practice this season. What better time to unveil such a wrinkle in the biggest game of the year? We dedicated an entire post to this idea a couple of weeks ago but we'll show the highlights here.
Imagine Walsh and Rudolph being used in ways like this:
Or even this:
Plays like this are only limited by the imagination of their designer. Even as a decoy, Walsh could draw the defense's attention, potentially allowing the offense to find success in other areas. Gundy said they have it in their back pocket. I'm saying it now -- if they don't use Walsh and Rudolph together at least once, they're doing it wrong.
Well this is the last edition of this week's Chalk Talk. No one is calling for the Cowboys to use these specific plays; rather, the point of this article is to help you, the fans, imagine what they could unveil in Bedlam. This is the last game of the season with a rivalry and a conference championship on the line. Throw everything at them, Cowboys, and don't hold anything back.