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10 Thoughts On Oklahoma State’s 61-7 Win Over Southeastern Louisiana

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Oklahoma State drubbed Southeastern Louisiana on Saturday afternoon 61-7 in a game that felt like it lasted about three hours longer than it should have. OSU debuted its new threads (much more on that in a minute) and completely overwhelmed poor Southeastern Louisiana which received nearly $400K for its efforts.

Mason Rudolph was sharp, the running game was all right, the defense looked deep and Mike Gundy’s hair of course flowed like the frozen Jack and Cokes will tonight at Murphy’s. It’s tough to learn anything substantive from games like this one, but I’m always excited to write the first 10 Thoughts of any season. Let’s get to work.

1. Those Threads Were Spectacular

First things first. I knew the new uniforms would be clean, but that helmet was a fever dream of goodness that has been building for 20 years. It was the perfect cap to the new threads that in theory only got slightly upgraded but in reality look so much better.

From the bandana on the back of the helmet to the way the orange chromed in the sunlight to the white pants-socks-shoes look in Game 1, I could not be feeling these uniforms any harder. A true standing ovation in my office shed right now.

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2. Mason Certainly Looks The Part

We talked with Zac Robinson about this the other day, but Rudolph looks like a legitimate NFL quarterback. One interesting note the broadcasters made was that Gundy encouraged Rudolph to lose about 10 lbs. in the offseason. I’m not sure if he was quicker, but there were times he appeared borderline nimble (albeit against one and two-star recruits). The dink and dunk as there to the outside, the throws over the middle he’s always stepped into were sharp and he was making Johnny Football-like extended TD plays.

He finished the game 17/24 for 191 yards and two TDs, but I don’t much care about the numbers in this game. I’m buying ever snippet of Rudolph stock I can possibly corner right now. Gundy said in August he finally knows what the heck he’s doing, and you can tell. There is no swagger problem, no lack of knowledge problem and no issues with the arm. He’s the sharpest-looking QB1 to set foot on the BPS turf since Brandon Weeden.

It’s not even really that close.

3. Barry J. Was a Show

How fun was Barry J. Sanders in the first half? A little shimmy shake to get things going, punching one in from a yard out and following that up with a near replication of what pops used to do in the late 80s with a nasty little punt return.

I was selling on Barry J. coming into the year mostly because I thought expectations were out of control, but my PFB mates were having to talk me off a ledge in Slack late in the second quarter. Kyle, putting $500 on Junior at 9,000-1 to win the Heisman is not a good idea. Especially if it’s coming out of our paychecks.

4. I don’t Hate The Five RB Rotation

Here are the OSU rushing stats through one game.

  • Jeff Carr: 7.8 per carry
  • Justice Hill: 6.0 per carry
  • Rennie Childs: 7.0 per carry
  • Chris Carson: 3.4 per carry
  • Barry J: 0.6 per carry

On the whole the run game only notched 3.7 yards per carry which is not where you want to be against Southeastern Louisiana or really against any team, but I like how different each player is when they get the ball. Plus you can keep everybody fresh and ready to roll.

Forgive me if I was uninspired overall with OSU’s run game. Gundy said he liked it, but OSU averaged 4.4 yards per carry or better in the three non-conference games last season against much better opponents. Don’t bring me the “well, they played the backups most of the game” excuse either. It’s Southeastern Louisiana. It’s one step above me, Kyle Boone and the rest of the guys running the blog strapping it up and playing a game. If your backups can’t bang out four yards a carry against a FCS team, that’s a real issue.

I think there’s value in having five guys who can ball a little bit, but I’m not convinced on the whole that the offensive line or running game are “fixed.”

5. OSU Has Four Legit WR Threats

Jalen McCleskey, Jhajuan Seales (who had two TDs) and James Washington all looked like men among one-star players, and the one who would have looked most like that (Marcell Ateman) is out with an injury until October. OSU is deep at WR, but it’s also really, really good there at the very top. I might have underestimated how good coming into this season.

14 players caught passes, but only three (McCleskey, Seales and Washington) caught three or more from QB1. And 81’s two TDs were both pretty awesome.

As an aside, this quote at halftime from Mike Gundy was spectacular. “As an outsider” coming from the person who has been the face of the program off and on for the last 30 years.

6. Some Random Notes on the Defense

Speaking of being deep, Glenn Spencer was rolling deeper than Dana Holgorsen at a blackjack tournament with players in this game. Here are five notes I had written down:

Jarrell Owens is a lot faster than I thought. That front four was a little loose but incredibly athletic. Sugar Loaf Daniels looks like he’s gained about 15 lbs., Vincent Taylor blocked a FG and Owens and Trey Carter were all over the field. Should be a fun (if mildly or more than mildly) frustrating season of athletes trying to figure out how to be football players.

Justin Phillips has gained a lot of weight since that OU game in Norman his freshman year. Him and Gyasi Akem looked more out of place than Boone Pickens at a Democratic National Convention, but they (as Gundy would say) give great effort.

I have no idea what to make of Ramon Richards. I want to love him, but he does some truly infuriating things. He’s a lot like my kids in that manner.

Calvin Bundage is a complete and total lunatic. Dude is fun, isn’t he? By my count, he tried to literally take the head off a SE Louisiana player and followed that up by running halfway across the field to smother a poor SE Louisiana running back out of bounds right into the feet of a chanting Glenn Spencer. I like that OSU is recruiting (and hopefully getting more of) these kinds of players. Him and McCleskey are going to be a fun duo wearing No. 1 on both sides of the ball for the next three years.

• Devante Averette had what might turn out to be the play of the year. How good was this?

7. OSU Played a Lot of Freshmen

Calvin Bundage (more on him shortly), Obi Obialo, Dillon Stoner, A.J. Green, Justice Hill and Madre Harper are the ones I can remember off the top of my head. And this wasn’t exactly “get ’em time while Mason is at Murphy’s” playing time either. Harper scored the first TD of the season, Stoner caught two passes, Obialo caught another, Hill was impressive in the open field and Harper and Green were your two corners halfway into the second quarter.

The fact that this team is a veteran bunch with tons of returning starters and Gundy still trusts more than five freshmen to contribute is incredibly encouraging for the future of the program. I’m all in on Hill and Bundage …

8. QB2?

The Oil Baron looked solid even though he almost died by way of Sammy B. on Saturday afternoon in the west end zone. I was surprised to see John Kolar play so early and even more surprised to see Mason play the second half. Cornelius was solid I suppose, but it doesn’t mean I want to see him the rest of the season other than the Central Michigan and Kansas games.

He got a little hung up by seemingly getting a poorer OL performance than Rudolph got, but he still ran for 28 yards and was 6/8 through the air. He’s good. Not great. Loves his family (apparently).

9. We Know Nothing …

Here’s what happens when you schedule FCS teams.

This was a glorified scrimmage, and I’m probably being unkind to Oklahoma State’s third-teamers and walk-ons by saying that. We know very little more than we knew 24 hours ago, and what we do know is nothing more than a projection based on what we saw. I hate games like this for a number of reasons, but then again we could be 0-1 and staring Ohio State right in the face right now so I suppose I can put my knowledge of this team on the backburner for a proper ramp up to Big 12 play.

10. … But There’s a Swagger

One thing we do know is that this team has some swagger. From QB1 singing Garth on the sidelines to the slick new unis to Mike Gundy’s middle finger in the form of a flowing mullet to the college football world to Jalen McCleskey taking the Uni Heisman from Justin Gilbert, this team swags pretty hard. McCleskey said earlier this week they were going to take SE Louisiana seriously — and I think they did for the most part — but you can tell, this squad has bigger games in the back of its mind.

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Gundy (and Rudolph) won’t let them get too far out in front of things, but there seems to be more an air of “hey, we know what we’re doing this time around” than there was even last year when they were streaking to 10-0. That team always felt like its internal battle cry was, “we aren’t totally sure that we’re elite, but this sure is a lot of fun” whereas this year’s team has an identity from the start.

Mason Rudolph as the elite QB. Jordan Sterns as the hard-hitting leader on defense. A veteran named Junior that appears to be as advertised. A bushel of freshmen that act like seniors. And a head ball coach with visions of something special. We didn’t learn everything this week, but what we did learn was that Oklahoma State thinks it is the best team in the Big 12.

The best part about this time of year? It just might be.