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Central Arkansas Defensive Preview: Where Do We Start

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Last week, Samford eviscerated the Central Arkansas defense. The 45-16 score makes that abundantly clear. The thing is though, whether the Cowboys want to run or pass the ball, the Pokes can't really go wrong.

George Odum (no. 31), led the team in tackles. Not a good sign for the Bears because he's a defensive back.
George Odum (no. 31), led the team in tackles. Not a good sign for the Bears because he's a defensive back.
Michael C. Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Everyone get ready. This game Saturday is screaming "Big Play Alert!" Of Samford's seven scoring drives last week, four of them took less than 50 seconds. Yeesh. Let's dive deeper into this potential train wreck shall we?

Pick Your Poison:

Chris Carson should have a big game. James Washington should have a big game. Mason Rudolph should have a big game. The entire Oklahoma State offense should be producing career numbers come Saturday in Stillwater. The Central Arkansas defense does not have a strength. It allows big plays and does not have a safety valve to keep itself in check. On the ground the Bears allowed 164 yards against Samford. Through the air, the Bears relinquished 372 yards. Goodness, the Bears can't catch a break after their big loss last weekend. Even if Cowboy offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich decides to swallow the majority of the playbook, career numbers will be within grasp.

Pick on the Secondary:

The Central Arkansas secondary was the most productive group in last Saturday's FCS match up. That is not a good thing. That typically shows that plays are making it into the deep part of the defense, and potentially past that last line of defense. George Odum was the highlight in a dismal effort last week for the Bears. Odum wasn't only stopping the bleeding but also providing a pass rush. Probably not a good sign when one of your best pass rushers is coming from the defensive backfield. Mason Rudolph's decision making will keep him out of trouble this game. Don't expect Rudolph to turn the ball over in this contest.

Pick Your Block:

The aforementioned Bear pass rush was almost nonexistent last weekend. One sack and one quarterback hurry during the entire contest. The hurry coming from Odum in the defensive backfield and the sack coming from a freshman defensive tackle. Don't expect things to repeat themselves here. The Cowboy offensive line struggled last season and after last week, there is an upswing of optimism. The trench Cowboys were able to get a push against a Central Michigan front in running situations and were able to hold the pass rush off of prized jewel Mason Rudolph. The Cowboy front five will get good practice against a much less talented group than a week ago. The more practice in dominance the better for a group, that will be pivotal for a team pushing for the chance at a conference title.

Coffelt's Picks:

It isn't pretty. Cowboys take their home opener, 69-7.