Oklahoma State thrashed Kansas on Saturday in Boone Pickens Stadium 58-10 on a day that was heavier than it should have been. Three people were killed in the morning’s Homecoming parade which is completely unspeakable, but then the Pokes and their head coach tried to use words to console themselves as well as those in the stadium.
Then they played.
I remember last year’s Homecoming game. I wrote a takedown of the Greek community for leaving at halftime of the West Virginia game. It was stupid. The backlash was even more stupid. I miss those days. How do you write about dozens of people you don’t know and will likely never meet other than to say they are you and me and all of us.
My parents were supposed to be at this game and likely this parade. I’ve been to it before. Most of you have too. Mary Fallin’s comment about life being fleeting might look calloused at first glance, but she’s right.
Fallin: "It was a great remembrance that life can be fleeting."
— Cody Stavenhagen (@CodyStavenhagen) October 24, 2015
Life is fleeting. Football is fun. Players are humans. Family is important.[1. “He loves his family.”] It was a sad day in Stillwater, yes, because the world is shattered and not getting better. This is the third time major tragedy has struck the school this century which is obviously three times too many. But it was also, in a lot of ways, a reminder that we’ve still got each other. I’ll let Burns Hargis say it better than I could.
“The Cowboy family pulls together,” said Hargis. “Unfortunately, we’ve had to do it before, and we’ll do it again. God bless, and we pray for everyone.”
Here are my 10 thoughts about the worst game of the year.
1. The game was irrelevant
I’m not going to lie, I barely watched the game. Part of that was probably because it was Kansas and covering Kansas games is like changing your kids’ diapers, but I just couldn’t get jacked up about third down blitzes and Mason Rudolph deep outs that quickly after the body bags were zipped up a couple of streets from Boone Pickens Stadium. I’m not saying they shouldn’t have played the game (and I understand why they did), but it felt pretty empty.
2. James Washington is disgusting
The other J-Dub had his third career 100-yard receiving game on Saturday with freak show catches like this one.
He also had a great end around and several other catches including an over-the-shoulder one right before the one above for the TD. I change my mind about who OSU’s best receiver is on a week to week basis, but this week it was definitely No. 28. I agree with OKC Dave who noted that he’s not a big fan of the narrative that OSU’s receiving depth is a huge strength because I think one superstar plus a bunch of other dudes outweighs 10 really good receivers, but Washington could be that guy. Still a sophomore.
3. Bad Kansas is so bad
I want to feel bad for Kansas because …
Kansas football! pic.twitter.com/j3sdxOtY7A
— Pistols Firing (@pistolsguys) October 24, 2015
But I don’t. No, I don’t feel bad at all.
4. Mason Rudolph continues to crush at home
Maybe it’s the comfort of knowing home games are well attended by sorority row. Maybe the sight lines in BPS are clearer for No. 2. Maybe he prefers going east-west rather than north-south. Maybe he just gets rattled on the road. I don’t know. But Mason Rudolph has been a different QB at home than he has been on the road. Career splits.
Home: 68 percent | 355 yards/game | 8 TD | 2 INT
Road: 58 percent | 265 yards/game | 6 TD | 8 INT
Granted, those numbers are buoyed by Kansas, UTSA and Central Arkansas and he still sailed more throws than I would have preferred on Saturday, but I trust him completely in Stillwater.
5. Getting the backups in was a win
There were three potential wins for the team on Saturday. Win the game. Get the backups in early. No injuries. Mission accomplished (pending the injury report). We got nearly a quarter and a half of the oil baron at QB and got enough RayTay for me to wonder if he’s sort of secretly the most talented RB we have. I know that’s probably not a reality, but his performance at least begged the question.
6. Emmanuel Ogbah could have beaten Kansas on his own
On a scale of 1 to seeing the Ring when you were a 10-year-old, how terrifying is this?
That actually might be my favorite GIF of the season. It’s just such a perfect representation of Ogbah, the OSU defense and what it has done all year. We might not get you every time, but we’re at least going to make you incredibly concerned.
Kansas could only muster 30 rushing yards on 27 carries and barely topped 200 yards overall. I know they’re Kansas, but that’s exactly what you want to see.
Also, Devante Averette for RB?
7. Mason Rudolph is a stay-at-home mom
Let me explain. I told Carson this in a podcast earlier this week, and I think he thought I was a moron.
Mason Rudolph is the stay-at-home mom your kids don’t appreciate and J.W. Walsh is the working dad who comes home and takes the kids for ice cream and to the movies. Rudolph drops dimes all day and then Walsh comes in and throws a ball eight feet behind Chris Lacy for a touchdown and everybody eats it up like dad just whipped up a five-course meal even though he really just grabbed In-and-Out on the way home.
Moms (and Rudolph) … perennially underappreciated.
Walsh, by the way, now has 13 total TDs on the season. Rudolph has just 11. This means nothing outside of the fact that Walsh comes in when OSU gets in the red zone. But it’s still interesting.
Cool shot of the General getting his second score. pic.twitter.com/IqxltqJqos
— Pistols Firing (@pistolsguys) October 24, 2015
8. Did we learn anything about the run game?
It’s tough to learn much against a team that looks like it was trying to sign up for C league intramurals and accidentally signed up for A league.
@pistolsguy they're a C League team that accidentally signed up for A League
— Eric Williams (@Super_EWilliams) October 24, 2015
OSU ran it 47 times for just over 200 yards. Chris Carson and Rennie Childs both got five a pop on the day. But I’m not going to lose my mind over it given Kansas was No. 120 in run defense per carry (5.49 yards). The only thing you can really extrapolate, I think, is that OSU’s offensive line looked better and maybe it can carry some of that momentum into Lubbock (and beyond).
9. OSU is 7-0 for the fourth time ever
This year, 1945, 2008 and 2011. That’s pretty unbelievable. But today was also a good reminder that it’s ultimately meaning less because …
10. This is staggering and devastating
As somebody with a daughter not much younger than this girl, I just can’t …
Reason 997 why you don't drink and drive. pic.twitter.com/LRhATGpPfp
— lex (@AlexisBryan10) October 24, 2015
Also, a two-year-old death was recently confirmed which means the death toll is now four. That’s unfathomably sad.
We’ll get back to football soon. Not now, though. Not now.