From the Coordinator: Todd Monken

Todd Monken would have liked to have played starting quarterback Wes Lunt a large portion of another quarter. He would have liked to seen his young quarterback take Oklahoma State's offense through a real two-minute situation, not the regular high tempo offensive pace the Cowboys employ most of the time. The 84-0 breezy win over Savannah State just did not allow for those opportunities.

"The only thing you can take away from it is that we had 11 guys on the field," said Monken, who did stay up in the press box and coaches booth for both halves. "When we went tempo, we got lined up. Our process was good. A lot of young guys got to play. The reality is that you want to make sure you're playing good football. Our substitutions were good."

Something that Monken, Oklahoma State fans, Arizona and all future opponents did get to see is that against the competition on Saturday the Cowboys could run the ball. Tough to say but it would appear that the tandem of Joseph Randle and Jeremy Smith -- and even Desmond Roland, Caleb Muncrief and Corey Bennett -- can all run the football, especially that top pair.

"They're good enough to where you can hand it off to them in a bad box count, and they will come out of the other end," said the veteran offensive coach. "It is comforting knowing you have good running backs back there. We will rely on that. We aren't going to throw Wes out there and expect him to throw it 60 times to win."

Unless they have to. The Arizona defense was pretty good, and it was balanced as they allowed 161 rushing yards and 197 passing yards. Hard to figure which poison will work best against the Wildcats.

The former home of "Desert Storm" in college football has a new defensive mode with the 3-3-5 of new Wildcats head coach Rich Rodriguez. Middle linebacker Jake Fischer was the Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week for his 13 tackles made while playing everyone of the 94 defensive snaps Arizona had on Saturday in the 24-17 overtime win over Toledo.

"It's a different challenge," said Monken of the Arizona defense. "You are playing a team that is completely different up front, three down instead of four down, and a different skill set that is coming off a win. The reality is even though you get the win (over Savannah State) this is why guys play, to go on the road and play a good team and feel better about the win."

"Coming from West Virginia, Jeff Casteel and his staff, and they are going to have familiarity with us having been with Dana (Holgorsen)," continued Monken. "There aren't going to be any secrets here.

"They are going to be good because they believe in a certain system. They do it better than people run their offense. That is how they believe, that they can defend better than you can run your offense. It's going to be fun. We have a little bit of an advantage because they had to go to overtime in their first game and we only showed what we needed to show."

Now the Cowboys will need to show more Saturday, more Lunt for sure. So does Monken want to predict how well Lunt will handle his first road game?

"I have no idea. I don't know how he will handle being on the road," said Monken. "That is something that until you go and do it, you don't know. You prepare and try to convince him it will be the same thing. You don't have the crowd to pick you up. Your preparation is different. Where you stay is different. Hopefully he will be fine."

We'll go out on a limb and predict Lunt and his right arm or limb will be just fine.


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