Monday, August 16, 2010

Big 12 2010-Oklahoma State Cowboys

2009 Record: 9-4 (6-2)
Head Coach: Mike Gundy (6th season, 36-27)
Offensive Coordinator: Dana Holgorsen (1st season)
Defensive Coordinator: Bill Young (2nd season)
2009 Bowl Game: Cotton Bowl, Lost to Ole Miss 21-7

Offense: This unit was a huge disappointment in 2009, and so Holgorsen was brought in to improve things. He has a hell of a lot less to work with in 2010 than he would have had in 2009. Of course, star WR Dez Bryant was suspended and then left school, and QB Zac Robinson was hurt on and off and then was unusually underproductive, and then RB Kendall Hunter was hurt as well. Hunter is the only one who is back. Holgorsen is a good pick to upgrade the offense, as he ran the show at Houston last season, and Texas Tech before that. Brandon Wheedon, a 26 year old junior, will now be the QB. Hubert Anylam and Josh cooper return at WR, where there will also be two new players starting. Lane Taylor (C) is the lone returnee on the line.

Defense: There are many questions on this side of the ball as well. OSU had a solid defense last year, but many of the starters from that team are now gone. Jamie Blatnick and Ugo Chinasa return at DE, but both tackles will be new starters. The entire LB corps is composed of new starters. SS Markelle Martin is the lone returnee in the secondary at SS. This defense is being rebuilt from the ground up.

Special Teams: Quinn Sharp is simply one of the best punters in college footbaqll today. His services will be very important with a new look rebuilt defense. Dan Bailey is basically an average PK, but returns to get more experience and hopefully to improve.

2010 Schedule

Wins: 9/4 Washington State, 9/11 Troy, 10/8 @ Louisiana-Lafayette

Toss Up Games: 9/18 Tulsa, 10/30 @ Kansas State, 11/6 Baylor, 11/20 @ Kansas

Losses: 9/30 Texas A&M, 10/16 @ Texas Tech, 10/23 Nebraska, 11/13 @ Texas, 11/27 Oklahoma

As sketchy as the roster is on talent, OSU can still manage a bowl bid with this team. Every game in the toss box is winnable, so 7 wins is not entirely out of whack. However, if the roster failes to gel, and the wheels get wobbly for any reason, the Cowboys could plummet to 3 or 4 wins this season. Stay tuned.

Outlook: This is not Baylor, where losing has become the norm. There is a competetive spirit at OSU that won't let the Cowboys stay down for long. This is going to be a wild ride this season, and expectations should not get out of hand. Hope for limited success and celebrate anything more.

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