Another week, another opponent. This week we interrogate Robert Whetsell at Cowboys Ride For Free (but with a special bonus answer at the end!). These guys are a lot like us and are all about the boozin', hollerin', and footballin' that comes with playing in the Big XII.
Head over to their site to catch our Q&A with them, and be sure to check out my current top three beers and throw down your rankings, or how bad 3.2% alcohol sucks.
Tell us about Daxx Garman. Is he related to Dax Shepard? Is he related to the Garmin company and can give our defense directions when they get lost? What's the fan base think of Garman and how does he stack up against the other stat stuffing quarterbacks under Gundy?
If there isn't a secret triplet out there named "Daxxx," who is a porn star, I'll be disappointed. He might be a distant cousin to Garmin as he most definitely can navigate long distances with a football very accurately.
Thanks for using "plural" when referring to stat stuffing QB's under Gundy. There's only been one, and he's not anywhere near that. One of our other contributors likened Garman to Wes Lunt (without the injuries or interceptions). He definitely has a better arm than both Walsh and Chelf. He still has some work to do, as the fans may love the deep throws, but really want to see the intermediate and shorter routes get more action. He's currently averaging 19 ypc. The last time an OSU QB was in that territory was 1972, and I'm the only contributor that remembers who that was. I also watched him play. Here are Brent Blackman's stats from that season...
30-102 for 572 yds, 6 TD's, 6 INT's, 29.4% completions. BTW...OSU beat Iowa State in Stillwater that year, 45-14.
And no, Bill Snyder and I do NOT swap stories from the good old days.
Texas Tech was obliterating OSU's defense when Davis Webb was healthy last week. What caused this and is it a concern?
You conveniently left out how our defense stiffened on a number of occasions (you can also insert here the part where Tech self destructed).
This will be our roller coaster ride for the season. The back 7 is littered with freshmen, and between 5-8 have been on the field at the same time. The athleticism is incredible, but so is the inexperience. They are going to give up plays, but they will also make plays like Ramon Richards interception that ended one of Tech's drives within FG range.
The front 4 are in much better shape.
While having a hard time getting off the field in the first half, the second half was much better. Gundy and staff have been known for their in game and halftime adjustments. DC Glenn Spencer is great, so I have faith in this side of the ball.
Speaking of the OSU defense, what's different about them now versus 2011 when they were generating turnovers by just stepping on the field?
Some of that turnover stuff is luck, some of it design. When the design and good luck coincide, you get 2011. We all knew that wasn't sustainable. That being said, it feels like 2014 will be closer to 2011 than the previous 2 seasons, and they'll need it because this might actually be the weakest offense since the Weeden era. You guys probably don't have anything to worry about because your QB doesn't have any ugly throws on his resume this season...
Desmond Roland had a huge game in Ames last year, but has been overshadowed by Tyreek Hill in 2014. Which one completely eviscerates Iowa State this week, or will it be someone we don't see coming?
Hill has overshadowed Roland due to hype and a developing offensive line. While the hype is well deserved, Gundy and Company have yet to fully unwrap the playbook, so we've only seen flashes of Hill's potential (and the flashes have been spectacular). Luckily for you, our OC hasn't figured out how to use his new toy just yet. The bigger issue is the offensive line, which was decimated by departures, most notably Joe Wickline to Texas. Wickline didn't leave much in his wake for Bob Connelly, so the running game has been spotty at best. We put up less than 200 yds rushing on Tech, and EVERYBODY puts up at least 200 yds on Tech (that's what the folks at Arkansas told us, but I think they were only talking about the 2nd half).
The real threat with Garman now at the helm is the wide receiving corp. This is an extremely talented group. OSU has had 4 different players lead the team in receiving yards over the first four games. Four of the top 6 receivers have at least 5 receptions and are averaging 20 or more yards per reception. Seven players are averaging at least 1 catch per game, and 13 players have caught passes this season. Marcell Ateman (6-4, 210) and Tyreek Hill (small and VERY fast) are the workhorses so far with 11 and 12 receptions respectively.
If I had to map out a defense, I would forget about stopping the run. Let your front four and maybe a LB do work and keep 6 guys in coverage. If you put your corners on an island, you'll get burned. Also, if Tyreek Hill lines up in the slot, somebody better press cover him because if he releases free off the line, you'll get this...
That's a guy running at approximately 19mph when he catches the ball.
Has Stillwater passed a No Naz Ordinance yet? There's some scuttlebutt that he is traveling with the team this week and is going to dress and get one play to kill Oklahoma State's hopes.... again. I assume you're doing bus checks for when the team arrives at the stadium, right?
Telling us we can't drink away the memory of 2011 wasn't enough, was it? I truly hope Big 12 Refs are fully focused on the Cyclones this weekend. If it was The Mayor and Travis Ford on opposite sidelines Saturday I would mail it in right now, but it's not. It's our football team (which lost to Florida State by 6) vs your football team (which lost to North Dakota State by 20). That gives me confidence.
I do know that the city will shut down any "all you can eat" buffets for the weekend in anticipation of your coaching staff's arrival.
I hear one or several of your guys are coming down for the game. Make sure to hit up our guys on Twitter. They'll be ready for you!
Bonus Response: King chimes in with his views on Davis Webb:
Davis Webb is a figment of your imagination, much like the Tech pass defense. Sure, it looks like they have a quarterback out there lighting us up, but really it's an illusion. That also what my wife said when I told her it was 9 inches. So what really happened? Well we started the game with a young secondary, lost half of those guys to injury in the first half, and then brought in babies to try and slow em down. What killed us, and always has killed us, and probably always will kill us, are short crossing routes to Wes Welker type players that Tech seems to breed. The linebackers lose him, he makes the catch, and before we've done anything about it he's 11 yards up the field.
Also it was a Thursday night game, and for reasons known only to Stephen Hawking, we play like poo on non-Saturday games (see: every Thursday game ever and one particular Friday game in 2011.) So if ISU want's success against us I'd suggest a healthy dose of crossing patterns followed by swing passes, those always work for Tech.