OSU-Troy Report Card

Ryan Stewart hands out grades following Oklahoma State's 41-38 victory over Troy.

Josh Cooper: A
After an early fumble on a 3-yard reception that led to Troy's first lead of the game, Cooper responded with a devastating block to preserve Weeden on a deep pass. He followed that with a 40-yard reception and a scintillating 66-yard touchdown on a punt return to come full circle by giving OSU back the lead at 34-27.

All in all, Cooper finished with eight receptions for 114 yards and his first TD in 364 days, when he scored against Houston in week two last season. He also showed a lot of what his coaches and teammates were raving about in the preseason regarding his ability to flourish in Dana Holgorsen's offense.

Jamie Blatnick: A-
Blatnick's first game back after his legal situation came to a close showed exactly what he capable of bringing to OSU's defense. Blatnick recorded a sack and on the next play he broke up a pass, nearly intercepting it, forcing the Trojans into a punt.

Brandon Weeden: C-
Weeden got off to his second consecutive rocky start but was unable to establish the rhythm he found against Washington State a week ago. Weeden did make several polished throws, finishing with 348 yards and two touchdowns on 29-of-39 passing, but he was forced into a number of mistakes.

Weeden threw two costly interceptions and fumbled the ball three times, losing two. Weeden's second lost fumble came with under a minute to go in the game out of the victory formation. It was a mistake coach Mike Gundy said he hadn't seen in more than 20 years.

Ball security and avoiding mistakes: F
Up until the final minute of the third quarter OSU was losing the turnover battle 4-0. OSU forced Troy into four second-half turnovers but still lost the turnover battle 5-to-4. Gundy said it was the sloppiest victory he could remember being a part of.

The Cowboys lost two interceptions and three of its five fumbles. OSU also finished with 12 penalties for 139 yards. And it wasn't just the amount of penalties that was discouraging. Most of them came at costly times, wiping out big gains or important stops, including a nearly 100-yard touchdown return by Kendall Hunter in the second quarter that was called back for holding.

Running in the ‘Air Raid:' A
Hunter continued to show running in the spread attack is more than doable, it might actually be perfect for his skill set.

On Hunter's first touchdown, he was belted at the 1–yard line but stayed on his feet enough to bounce in on the 10-yard scamper. Hunter's next touchdown came on a 24-yard burst up the left side in the second quarter.

Hunter finished with 162 yards on 28 carries for 5.6 per carry.

The Cowboy coaching staff worked several others into the mix, as well, with Justin Blackmon finishing with two carries for 23 yards, Josh Cooper had one carry for 16 yards and Joseph Randle had one for eight yards.

Oklahoma State's second quarter: D-
OSU took a 13-3 lead with 11:08 left in the second quarter. Then all hell broke loose as Troy put up 17 consecutive points on the Cowboys. Troy started its run when quarterback Corey Robinson connected on a 47-yard touchdown pass to Jason Bruce on a third-and-10 play that seemed to deflate the Cowboy secondary.

OSU responded with a long touchdown return on the ensuing kickoff that was negated by a holding call. After OSU got the ball back after the penalty yardage was marked off, Josh Cooper fumbled on a three-yard reception, giving the Trojans the ball at the 21. Troy made quick work of the drive as Jerrel Jernigan hauled in a 10-yard TD reception for a 17-13 lead.

On the next OSU drive, quarterback Brandon Weeden fumbled the ball away on a nine-yard sack, setting up Troy for another short field that ended with a field goal by Michael Taylor for a 20-13 lead.

OSU responded with a quick three play drive capped by a 24-yard touchdown run by Hunter. But the 20-20 draw didn't last long as Jernigan returned the kickoff 100 yards for the final score of the half.

The 24 points allowed by OSU in the quarter was the most given up by OSU in a single session since the Cowboys' allowed 24 points in the fourth quarter of its 61-41 loss to Oklahoma on Nov. 29, 2008.

OSU's opening drive of the third quarter: A
After a dismal second quarter, OSU opened with a 79-yard scoring drive that took 10 plays. The Cowboys overcame a number of penalties and capped off the drive with a 2-yard fade to Blackmon in the right corner of the end zone to tie the game at 27.

Justin Blackmon and Hunter: A+
Two games into Dana Holgorsen's tenure as OSU's offensive coordinator, Hunter and Blackmon have accounted for all 11 of OSU's offensive scores. Hunter has six rushing TD's in two games and Blackmon has five scores on the receiving end. That is a good stat for them but we have yet to see what it means about the reliability of the rest of the Cowboy playmakers as the competition takes a leap forward in the coming weeks.

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