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Oklahoma State Running Back Key to Offensive Success
By Kade Kimble,
The Oklahoma State Cowboys are off to a 2-2 start to the football season, and it can be attributed to a multitude of things. Both the offense and defense have shown bright spots, but, ultimately, haven't found consistency.
If the Cowboys are able to put together a complete game on both sides of the ball, who knows what they would look like.
With neither side of the ball reaching their potential -- or doing so at the same time -- the ceiling of this team is undetermined. There is, however, a clear path to the offense finding that rhythm and success on a consistent basis, and that's the run game.
Ollie Gordon should be the starting running back every game and be receiving the most touches at the position. He's the best option to get the ground game going which would then open up the passing game.
During the Cowboys' last game against Iowa State, Gordon put up 121 yards on 18 touches -- good for 6.7 yards per carry. Of course, a 71-yard run helped boost his stats.
Nonetheless, Gordon got more touches, which opened up the passing game for Alan Bowman, who was the full-time starting quarterback for the game.
Moving forward, running a similarly balanced offensive scheme could work no matter who is under center as long as Gordon is able to get the proper touches to get in rhythm.
"I felt comfortable with the role," Gordon said after the loss last Saturday. "It helped me see how they were covering, if they were going to come down and try and hit or if they were gonna arm tackle and how they were playing off our blocks. So it helped me distinguish that."
Again, this was, by far, the most amount of carries Gordon has received this season. Against South Alabama, a week before the Iowa State matchup, Gordon received just three carries.
"We played better in our first half this week than we have in our previous games," Gordon continued. "We came out firing on all cylinders and we kind of let off the gas and then we got back on it. We just gotta find a way to finish the game all together."
The writing is on the wall, and the offense can be consistent. Limiting turnovers and pounding the rock is key, but doable for the Cowboys offense.
Defensively, the 3-3-5 scheme should allow for opposing offenses to move the ball a little bit but ultimately fail to make big plays or consistently drive the entire field and end up in the end zone.
If the two sides of the ball can begin to come together, the Cowboys can begin to find momentum late in this season.