Oklahoma State Football 2012 Bowl Capsule

Oklahoma State Cowboys
Big 12


The 2011 Oklahoma State Cowboys went 12-1 and won their BCS bowl against Stanford on the way to a historic season. The 2012 Oklahoma State Cowboys were forgotten from the start of the year. With main players graduating and moving on to the NFL ranks, and the excitement created by early season performances of West Virginia and Kansas State, the Cowboys slipped under the radar almost immediately. Then, they lost two of their first four contests and were completely forgotten about. The two losses ended up being to pretty good teams (Arizona on the road and Texas). Oklahoma State got their act together and went on a bit of a run to where they stand today. The final numbers, as you’ll see, are surprisingly close to what last year’s team was able to generate. The outcome is not the same but the 2012 team was not that far away from being great and should have been much closer to being relevant.

2012 Record: 7-5, 5-4
Coach: Mike Gundy
Coach Bowl Record: 4-2

Big Wins: 10/20 Iowa State (31-10), 11/17 Texas Tech (59-21)
Bad Losses: 9/8 at Arizona (38-59), 9/29 Texas (36-41)

A season ago, quarterback Brandon Weeden threw for nearly 5,000 yards, leading the Cowboys to a 12-1 record. Their offense was potent, to say the least. NFL draftee Justin Blackmon went off, grabbing 121 balls for over 1,500 yards. Joseph Randle, aided by Jeremy Smith, led Oklahoma State to over 2,000 yards on the ground as well, something often overlooked by people unfamiliar with the team’s offensive prowess. Now, just one year later, with the quarterback and receiver having moved on to the NFL, the Cowboys’ offense is almost as good and nobody seems to have noticed. Joseph Randle, this time with a little less help from Jeremy Smith, has marched the team to another impressive showing on the ground. Randle by himself eclipsed 1,000 yards yet again. There is no Blackmon or Weeden on this team but a slew of receivers and, oddly enough, a collective of quarterbacks, have filled the void. This year’s team did not battle for a championship berth but they did finish near the top of the nation in total offense and scoring offense as well as sacks allowed. Without the big names, Randle and company nearly duplicated last year’s historic output.

Although actually better in some ways than 2011’s version, the Oklahoma State defense was still their Achilles heel. The defense did not finish outside the top 100 like a year ago but it did surrender a number of dominating performances. Somewhat indicative of the Big 12 conference as a whole, State allowed passing yards, total yards, and points in huge clips. If the opponent was not a pushover (i.e. Savannah State in week one), the defense struggled to shut them down. The offense helped cover this up in a number of games, such as the 55-34 victory over West Virginia in week nine. However, in some of the most important games of the season, the defense was torn apart. Along with a negative turnover differential, Oklahoma State simply could not make plays on the other side of the ball if their offense was at all stunted. If you recall last year’s 12-1 team again, although they routinely gave up huge yards on the ground, they were much better against the pass than this year’s squad, and they were the very best team in the nation in turnover margin. That and they were even better on offense so outscoring an opponent only failed that lone time against Iowa State.

Statistical Leaders:
Rushing: Joseph Randle, RB, 1,391 yards
Passing: J.W. Walsh, QB, 1,478 yards
Receiving: Josh Stewart, WR, 1,154 yards
Tackles: Alex Elkins, LB, 73
Sacks: Nigel Nicholas, DE, 4.0
Interceptions: Lyndell Johnson, LB, 2; Daytawion Lowe, S, 2

2012 Team Stats:
Rushing Offense: 215.27 (20th in nation, 3rd in conference)
Passing Offense: 332.64 (7, 5)
Total Offense: 547.91 (5, 2)
Scoring Offense: 45.64 (3, 1)
Rushing Defense: 124.36 (22, 3)
Pass Defense: 284.73 (113, 8)
Total Defense: 409.09 (72, 5)
Scoring Defense: 28.36 (67, 6)
Turnover Margin: -0.36 (85, 9)
Sacks: 2.00 (60, 4)
Sacks Allowed: 0.91 (11, 1)

Recent Bowl Appearances:
2011    Fiesta Bowl    Stanford (41-38)
2010    Alamo Bowl    Arizona (36-10)
2009    Cotton Bowl    Mississippi (7-21)
2008    Holiday Bowl    Oregon (31-42)
2007    Insight Bowl    Indiana (499-33)

*all team stats through 11/24


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