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RECAP: Oklahoma State Improves to 7-1 After Defeating West Virginia 50-39

The Cowboys’ national championship dreams are alive.

NCAA Football: Oklahoma State at West Virginia Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports

If you are short for time, here’s a quick recap of the game.

The Cowboys ended up pulling away for the win, but it wasn’t an easy cruise.

For a more detailed recap, keep reading.

It appeared that the Oklahoma State Cowboys (7-1, 4-1 Big 12) would cruise to an easy victory after going up 30-10 early in the second half. Fans started to file out of the stadium and I think the Cowboys thought the West Virginia Mountaineers (5-3, 3-2) were going to roll over and give in.

Except they didn’t.

The Mountaineers scored 14 points in 55 seconds to pull the game to within six points and the Cardiac Cowboys were back. They didn’t give in, as they responded to outscore the Mountaineers 20-15 (including a WVU garbage TD with 90 seconds left) in the final frame.

After Justice Hill fumbled on the second play of the game and had to leave the game with an injury, true freshman J.D. King announced his arrival. King had 36 rushing attempts for 142 yards and an impressive TD.

He added five receptions for 29 yards and another score.

Mason Rudolph ended the game 20-34 for 216 yards, three TDs and and interception. He also broke three records on the day. The first record he broke was the school record for most TDs responsible for. His 1-yard rushing touchdown to put the Cowboys up 13-0 gave him 89 total for his career, breaking Zac Robinson’s record of 88. After it was all said and done, Rudolph now has 91 to his name. I find it hard to believe he won’t finish his career without breaking the century mark.

In the third quarter, Rudolph found King for a 6-yard score through the air. Rudolph entered the game needing two passing TDs to pass Brandon Weeden for all-time passing TD leader record of 75. Rudolph now sits at 77.

Finally, with the victory, Rudolph passed his head coach Mike Gundy for most career victories in school history. Gundy had 28 in his impressive career, and it was fitting to have his record broken while he was on the sidelines coaching.

Mason Rudolph if he had his coach’s mullet.

James Washington had another productive day after being shut down last week. “The General” hauled in seven catches for 91 yards and two scores.

Justice Hill was injured early and was out for most of the second half, but he returned in the second half and looked like he hadn’t missed a beat. Hill averaged a ridiculous 7.2 YPC on 12 rushes, 86 yards and two TDs.

We need to talk about special teams. Gundy appears to have moved on from Jalen McCleskey in the punt return game. Dillon Stoner looked great today, making zero mistakes. My only complaint is he took a couple unnecessary risks, but they paid off. Matt Ammendola looked good, except for a couple kicks. More on that in a second. Ammendola’s only major mistake was kicking the ball out of bounds. Kick it straight and let your defense go swarming like they did all day.

There was one dark spot in the special teams - Zach Sinor. I realize his job isn’t easy, but the redshirt junior was unreliable all day and was ultimately benched because Gundy couldn’t trust him anymore.

It started with the failed extra point in the first quarter.

The snap was good, the catch was clean, Sinor just didn’t hold the ball.

Then there was the blocked punt. Sinor was backed up into his own end zone, and appeared to have no sense of urgency as WVU brought the pressure. Sinor miskicked the ball, it was blocked and WVU recovered in the end zone for a touchdown.

One has to wonder what is wrong with Sinor, who was in the upper echelon of college kickers last season. Not only that, but what will Gundy do going forward? It’s a storyline to keep an eye on as the Cowboys prepare for Bedlam.

For the Mountaineers, Will Grier was 20-of-42 for 285 yards. He threw two TDs (one in garbage time) and FOUR INTs.

A.J. Green had a pair for the Cowboys, Ramon Richards hauled in the first one of the game and Jerel Morrow grabbed his first career interception in the contest.

The Oklahoma State defense did an outstanding job shutting down David Sills V through the air and Justin Crawford on the ground. The pair combined for 99 yards on the afternoon, forcing Grier to go to other players and causing him to make mistakes all day long.

Holding any opposing team to 2-of-15 on third down is outstanding, and speaks volumes to how far this team has come since the beginning of the year.

The Cowboys outgained West Virginia 246-62 on the ground today. They ran 18 more plays and possessed the ball for roughly 15 minutes longer than the Mountaineers.

An impressive stat is the Cowboys were 8-of-8 in the red zone today — four rushing touchdowns, three passing touchdowns and a 35-yard field goal by Ammendola.

This is a big win by the Cowboys.

Up next, the Cowboys play host to the Oklahoma Sooners in what will be a Top-15 (potentially Top-10) matchup. Bedlam will kick off in Stillwater at 3 p.m. next Saturday and will be televised on FS1.

For now, here are the highlights from today’s thrilling victory.