Cowboys Notebook: Gilbert Sits Out First Half

Justin Gilbert had started 30 consecutive games dating back to his sophomore season in 2011. But the senior cornerback saw that streak come to an end Saturday when head coach Mike Gundy suspended him from playing in the first half against Kansas State after he was ejected late in the fourth quarter of last weekend's game against West Virginia.

Gilbert did play in the second half against the Wildcats, finishing with three tackles on defense and returning a kickoff 21 yards.

"Justin's behavior in the game was not representative of Oklahoma State football. I had talked to (Big 12 supervisor of officials) Walt Anderson on Tuesday, and they didn't have any further discipline. But the decision that we made was essentially a violation of team rules. That's not the way we handle ourselves," Gundy said in the postgame.

"That was decision was made Saturday night on the way home from West Virginia, and Justin knew that. He handled it like a man. He practiced hard, his attitude was good, and he was excited to get back in the game. He made a mistake and lost his composure, and that's not the way that we teach and coach around here, and players understand that."

Senior Tyler Patmon made the start in place of Gilbert. It was the fifth-year senior's first start in a Cowboys uniform after transferring to OSU this past summer. He started 32 games in three years during his career at Kansas before transferring.

Cowboys Struggle In The Red Zone
The Cowboys began the season converting touchdowns on their first 15 trips into the red zone (inside the opponent's 20-yard line). They still entered Saturday's game with an impressive 94 percent success rate (15 of 16) for scoring touchdowns. But they weren't very good on Saturday. Here is a breakdown of their seven trips inside the red zone against the Wildcats:
1st quarter: Touchdown, Jeremy Smith 2-yard run; OSU 7, KSU 7.
2nd quarter: Field goal, 47-yard drive stalls at 13-yard line; OSU 10, KSU 7
2nd quarter: Touchdown, J.W. Walsh 3-yard run; OSU 17, KSU 14
3rd quarter: Field goal, 5-yard drive stalls at 17-yard line; OSU 20, KSU 21
3rd quarter: Field goal, 4-play drive which nets zero yards stalls at 6-yard line; OSU 23, KSU 21
4th quarter: Touchdown, Charlie Moore 6-yard catch from Walsh; OSU 30, KSU 29
4th quarter: Field goal, 4-play drive nets six yards before stalling at the 11-yard line; OSU 33, KSU 29.

"We need to become a better football team from the 7-yard line in, and that's a fact," said Gundy. "The defense gave us plenty of opportunities to score touchdowns and maybe put the game out of reach."

Grogan Makes Four Field Goals
Freshman Ben Grogan became just the seventh kicker in school history to make four field goals in a game, tying for the third-best single game performance by an OSU player. Grogan made field goals of 30, 34, 23 and 28 yards on Saturday. His 43-yard attempt in the second quarter was blocked and returned 65 yards by KSU's Kip Daily for a touchdown.

The school record for five field goals in a game is held by Larry Roach (vs. Missouri in 1982) and Quinn Sharp (vs. TCU in 2012). Six kickers (Dan Bailey, twice, Cary Blanchard, Luke Phillips, Larry Roach, Sharp and Tim Syndes) had kicked four field goals in a game prior to Grogan doing so against the Wildcats.

The freshman from Arlington, Texas was 1-for-4 on field goal attempts through the Cowboys first four games, and missed both of his tries in last week's loss to West Virginia.

"He's in a tough situation. To be a field goal kicker you're pretty isolated. In today's cyber-space media and Internet chat rooms, it's a tough gig for a guy who misses short field goals. You hear it a lot," said Gundy. "I told the team, I thought he did a great job staying focused. He kicked the same way in practice as he did the last three weeks. It's not easy. I'm very proud of him for being a freshman, stepping up and knocking them through there."

Only One Penalty
The Cowboys committed only one penalty on the day, which matched the fewest in school history. The Cowboys have committed only one penalty in a game on eight previous occasions with the latest coming against Stanford in the Fiesta Bowl on Jan. 2, 2012.

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