#80 Tulsa Football 2012 Preview

Tulsa Golden Hurricanes

2012 Overall Rank #80
#6 C-USA
Tulsa College Football 2012 Team Preview
Tulsa Team Page


Tulsa had a tremendous season under the newly hired head coach, Bill Blankenship, compiling an overall record of 8-5 and dominating Conference USA, going 7-1. Their season started out with turbulence, facing three teams ranked in the top 10 within the first four weeks. Coach Blankenship and the Golden Hurricanes were able to right the ship and steam rolled their way to a successful year. Coach Blankenship is now leading them into their second season and Tulsa has high hopes of repeating the success they had last season. Read the College Sports Madness interview with Coach Blankenship.

2011 Record: (8-5, 7-1)
2011 Bowl: Armed Forces Bowl vs BYU (L 21-24)
Coach: Bill Blankenship (8-5 at Tulsa, 8-5 overall)
Offensive Coordinator: Greg Peterson
Defensive Coordinator: Brent Guy

Returning Leaders:
Rushing: Ja’Terian Douglas, RB, 916 yards
Passing: Kalen Henderson, QB, 122 yards
Receiving: Willie Carter, WR, 868 yards
Tackles: Shawn Jackson, LB, 67
Sacks: Shawn Jackson, LB, 4
Interceptions: Dexter McCoil, DB, 6

Other Key Returnees: WR Bryan Durnham, RB Trey Watts

Key Losses: QB G.J. Kinne, LB Curnelius Arnick

Tulsa’s offense has been one of the most feared in the nation for many years and is clearly their biggest asset. Tulsa is able to control the tempo of the game and force opponents to get into a track meet with them, playing right into their hands as most teams simply can not keep up. As Coach Blankenship pointed out, Tulsa is so difficult to defend because they are “multifaceted and have a lot of different ways to get the ball to their playmakers and understand how to create match ups.”  This ingenious way to attack defenses creates mismatches and forces the hand of opposing defenses and allows the Golden Hurricanes to rack up the yards as they ranked 27th in the nation in total offense per game a season ago. This trend will continue into 2012 as Coach Blankenship and his staff continue to figure out the strengths of this team and showcase their playmakers on a weekly basis. When Tulsa takes the field, watch out, because there will be fireworks.

The Golden Hurricanes defense was unable to keep up with the blistering pace of their offense and turned Tulsa’s games into high scoring affairs. They allowed over 27 points per game, but were primarily abused through the air, ranking 117th in the nation in passing yards allowed per game. Of course these numbers are slightly inflated as they played the likes of Oklahoma State, Boise State, and Oklahoma; all dominate offensive teams, so the unit was better than the statistics may indicate. However, the loss of one of the nation’s best tacklers and Tulsa’s biggest defensive playmaker, linebacker Curnelius Arnick, will not make the task any easier, but Tulsa will be up to the task. They worked on “their physical toughness” in the spring, which should pay dividends in stopping the run.

The Bottom Line:
The Golden Hurricanes have to replace G.J. Kinne, a three year starter, and Arnick, the third leading tackler in the nation, so repeating their success from a season ago will not be easy. However, they feel that they have identified worthy players and they are ready to compete. Tulsa should be able to compile a winning record, but Conference USA is a difficult place to compete and they will have to earn every victory. This may be a rough season, especially at first as they groom their new signal caller, but Tulsa will always be able to be competitive with their great offense. It will be up to the defense and the physical toughness that they worked hard on all spring to help carry this team to victory.

Projected Bowl: Armed Forces Bowl

2011 Team Stats:
Rushing Offense: 191.69 (26th in the nation, 2nd in conference)
Passing Offense: 248.69 (44th, 5th)
Total Offense: 440.38 (27th, 3rd)
Scoring Offense: 33.08 (29th, 3rd)
Rushing Defense: 128.46 (33rd, 4th)
Pass Defense: 286.31 (117th, 11th)
Total Defense: 414.77 (87th, 8th)
Scoring Defense: 27.31 (64th, 5th)
Turnover Margin: -.46 (95th, 8th)
Sacks: 2.08 (T47, 3rd)
Sacks Allowed: 1.38 (33rd, 3rd)


Check out another article about Tulsa football