Scouting Report: OSU Looks For Running Game

When Iowa State puts on the video to watch the Oklahoma State offense, just what do they see. The Oklahoma State head coach sees a running game that he wishes were more productive. Wally Burnham, the Cyclones defense coordinator, likely sees what his head coach sees, the reincarnation of the old Raiders offense and Mad Bomber Daryle Lamonica in Cowboys trigger man Daxx Garman.

"I think he is a very good football player and he throws a very good deep ball. That is scary," Rhodes said of Garman. "Some guys can throw 'em all and some guys are better underneath. He is a very good deep ball thrower and he has excellent touch, and it they hit three of those then that is a quick 21 points."

Rhodes's memory bank also includes last season's game with Oklahoma State, a 58-27 Cowboys win that featured 342 rushing yards, including 219 yards by Desmond Roland, and four touchdowns for Roland on the day.

Those that cover the Cyclones believe that Rhodes will follow right along with what Texas Tech did last week in bringing up their safeties and playing a heavy box, daring Garman to keep up his long-range passing barrage. It is also what the Cyclones did against Baylor. It is the philosophy of most every defensive coordinator, stop the run first and make them beat you with the pass.

"I think you will see Iowa State take a page from the playbook of pressing up," said Cyclones Radio Network sideline reporter and former Cyclone Ben Bruns. "Iowa State's cornerbacks have played well and Nigel Tribune has taken receivers out of the game, and I think they will play the safeties up and stop the run first. They will want to put Oklahoma State in a similar position as what they did against Baylor and make them beat them down the field with throws."

Eric Heft is the color analyst for the Cyclones Network, a longtime observer of Iowa State football. He feels the secondary gives Iowa State a chance as they may be young, but they are getting their roles down.

"Iowa State has really shown improvement in the secondary," Heft said. "Those young safeties have never played before but they have really come a long way. Kamari Cotton-Moya and T.J. Mutcherson have come up well against the run and Mutcherson has had a couple of picks. They have been physical and made tackles. I have been impressed with them. I think they will hold up and do a pretty good job. They have shown that ability so far."

The question that remains to be answered on Saturday at Boone Pickens Stadium is will those safeties be up in the box ready to punch a running back or backed up and ready to roll over the top and knock away or pick off a Garman rocket?



See what OSU Cowboy fans are saying here