Oklahoma State football: Cowboys can't generate any offense in 28-7 loss to Texas
STILLWATER — There were fireworks at halftime. A fan kicked in a short field goal during a break and won $10,000. Oklahoma State’s 18 seniors were honored before the game.
That’s it. The short list of clear positives Saturday night at Boone Pickens Stadium as the Cowboys lost their fourth straight. This time, it was 28-7 to a resurging Texas team that earned a bowl berth by demolishing the Cowboys.
Down 19-0 at halftime, quarterback Daxx Garman had six completions and Kip Smith had five punts.
Early in the third quarter, the Cowboys had 56 total yards on offense and 55 penalty yards.
When time expired, OSU averaged just 1.5 yards per rush on its way to 34 total.
However, as coach Mike Gundy fielded questions after, he was calm as ever — restating the team’s season-long mantra that a young group up front isn’t allowing the offense to flourish. That keeps the defense on the field too much. And it’s why the Cowboys are stuck in neutral.
But why stay so calm?
Why not show some raw emotion? Raise your voice and make a point? Wouldn’t that reassure fans, players and recruits that getting beat 152-40 over the past four games isn’t acceptable for a program that entered the year with 50 wins over its last five seasons?
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Gundy responded that “nobody likes to lose,” but there’s a reason for his laid-back mannerisms, even after a crowd-evacuating loss at Boone Pickens Stadium.
“I’m not sure anger and frustration is a positive resource for improvement,” Gundy said.
Same goes for his players.
“I want them to care,” Gundy added. “But I also want them to keep control and continue to work together as a team.”
In the postgame locker room, fullback Teddy Johnson said, “There were a lot of different emotions going on,” with, “hurt and disappointment,” at the forefront. That undoubtedly motivates senior leaders like defensive tackle James Castleman.
“I feel like frustration could fuel us, add on to our motivation to keep fighting and keep going,” Castleman said. “Eventually, they keep backing us up, backing us up; eventually we’re going to hit that corner. And we’re not going to give up.”
At the same time, linebacker Seth Jacobs wanted to make it clear that frustration isn’t aimed toward any individuals on the team.
“We’re not out there pointing fingers at one another,” Jacobs said. “We all take ownership of this.”
It doesn’t get any easier for the Cowboys, as they move on to face high-powered Baylor and then Bedlam on the road. Stiff competition that will likely breed more frustration among fans who demand success.
But even then, don’t expect Gundy or the Cowboys’ demeanor to change. That anger stays internal.
“You talk about coach Gundy or other coaches staying calm, not showing the emotion that a lot of people would expect,” receiver David Glidden said. “It’s one of those things where you’re in the business. It’s what you do. There’s going to be other teams and it’s their job to win games, too.”