OSU football report card: Cowboys deserve high marks for shutting down Kansas in Les Miles' return
Oklahoma State dominated Kansas 31-13 on Saturday, and the grades reflect the Cowboys’ control of this game from start to finish.
Containing Pooka: A
Kansas running back Pooka Williams came to Stillwater averaging 95.6 yards rushing a game, third best in the Big 12. OSU held him to only 26 yards on 12 carries. Williams tried several avenues. Up the middle. To the outside. But nothing was successful. His longest run of the day was a 10-yard scamper, but his other 11 runs totaled 16 yards. “He breaks one in just about every game,” Cowboy coach Mike Gundy said. But not Saturday. It was Williams’ lowest yardage total this season in games he’s had 10 carries or more.
This game got chippy. Near as anyone could tell, Kansas’ frustrations were the culprit. There were a couple instances of nasty hits by the Jayhawks, and the end of the game featured a fair amount of pushing and shoving. But the Cowboys stayed above the fray. OSU was whistled for only two penalties, and neither were unsportsmanlike conduct.
I’m on the record as being opposed to gray uniforms, but Saturday’s were great. The Cowboy Battalion jerseys done as a military salute were a darker gray, and the numbers were black rimmed in white. You could actually read the numbers. Not being able to see numbers is my biggest beef with OSU’s other gray jerseys, which have orange numbers that are practically impossible to read. Also, the Cowboys’ Battalion look included matte black helmets. Nice.
Special teams: D
- Related to this story
- Article: Recap: OSU 31, Kansas 13
- Article: Five takeaways from Oklahoma State's win over Kansas
- Article: OSU football: Kansas QB Manny Miles makes return to Stillwater
- Article: OSU football: Matt Ammendola has rare off day against Kansas
- Article: OSU football: Spencer Sanders' attempted hurdle goes wrong
- Article: OSU football by the numbers: Chuba Hubbard's rare status; Dillon Stoner's clutch November work
- Article: OSU football: Kolby Harvell-Peel again sparks defense
- Article: OSU football: Dillon Stoner's play, Spencer Sanders' hurdle among best, worst from win over Kansas
- Article: OSU football: Dru Brown makes his mark with Cowboys in relief of injured Spencer Sanders
- Article: OSU football: Chuba Hubbard belongs in NYC for Heisman Trophy ceremony
- Article: OSU football: Kickoff set at West Virginia
- Article: OSU football: Cowboys' offensive line intact for first time since Week 4
- Article: OSU football: Dillon Stoner has another big day
- Article: OSU vs. West Virginia football: Kickoff time, betting odds, matchup breakdown
- Article: OSU football: Kolby Harvell-Peel's study time is paying off big for Cowboys
- Article: Son of Kansas coach Les Miles quarterbacks vs. Cowboys
- Article: Mountaineers bench Kendall in place of Seth Doege's brother
- Article: OSU football: Kolby Harvell-Peel named Big 12 Defensive Player of Week for third time
- Video: OSU Football: Mike Gundy on win over Kansas
- Video: OSU Football: Cowboys roll past Kansas
- Video: OSU Football - Chuba Hubbard vs Kansas
- Video: OSU Football - Spencer Sanders vs Kansas
- Video: OSU Football - Amen Ogbongbemiga vs Kansas
- Video: OSU Football - Jim Knowles vs Kansas
One of the few blah spots for the Cowboys. The first half was particularly rough for OSU’s special teams, starting with Tom Hutton’s 25-yard punt in the first quarter. Then came a kickoff out of bounds and two missed field goals. Matt Ammendola missed a 45-yard attempt and a 48-yard attempt, both hooking left. A strong cross wind might’ve been partially to blame, but leaving points on the table is hard to stomach. And when Ammendola missed a chip shot from 26 yards out in the second half, it added misery to an already bad day.
Miles' return: B
Les Miles returned to the sideline at Boone Pickens Stadium for the first time since he coached the Cowboys. Now the coach of the Jayhawks, he was shown on the big screen right after the opening kickoff. “Welcome back former Cowboy coach Les Miles!” public address announcer Larry Reece said. The response was tepid. More cheers than boos, but honestly, more passivity than anything. Would’ve been nice for OSU fans to show a bit more appreciation for Miles’ role in rejuvenating the program. Still, it was cool to see not only Miles but also his son, Manny. The senior quarterback replaced Kansas starter Carter Stanley at one point in the second half as the Jayhawks sought a spark. Last we saw him in Stillwater, he was barely old enough to go to school. Saturday, he went 4 of 8 for 25 yards with one interception.
Veteran salute: A
OSU went all in with its recognition of veterans. In addition to the Cowboys’ “Battalion” uniforms and the coaches’ camo apparel, the pregame and halftime ceremonies had tons of patriotic elements. The pregame had a military jet flyover during the national anthem, and the Spirit Rider carried an American flag instead of an OSU one when Bullet made its first run. Then at halftime, a military band joined the Cowboy Marching Band for patriotic songs while military members unfurled a giant American flag on the field.