1. How did Daniel McLemore hold up at the field cornerback position?
McLemore, making his first start this season, is no rookie. He has 23 games of experience and has played quite often in his Cowboy career. A big question on McLemore is his size at 5-8, but he plays bigger than that with a great vertical leap and he is one of the strongest players pound for pound on the squad.
Colorado came out and threw early, but they attacked the boundary cornerback and All-Big 12 candidate Robert Jones. The Buffs threw for 318 yards with veteran Joel Klatt going 12-of-24 for 133 yards. James Cox came on to play most of the second half and completed 15-of-21 for 175 yards and a touchdown, but Cox was intercepted twice by linebacker Paul Duren. Some of those completions came at the expense of McLemore, but he kept the plays in front of him and most of the time they were for short gains that didn't sustain drives. An example came on the play before Duren's first interception as McLemore and Jon Holland doubled up to put Evan Judge down after just a two-yard completion.
Overall, McLemore had a team-leading nine tackles including a third down stop.
"I talked to the coaches and they just told me to go out there and play my game just like it was UCLA again," said McLemore. "I talk to Darrent (Williams) and he gave me a good look and told me just to play like it's practice."
McLemore will be back in the same spot on Saturtday when the Cowboy host Texas A&M for homecoming.
2. Why did the Cowboys pass offense have its best performance of the season?
It starts with the fact Colorado – as the OSU coaching staff suspected they would – loaded the box with eight, even nine players. Oklahoma State didn't actually open this way, but the first seven plays on the script going into the game were passes. For the first time young Cowboy quarterback Donovan Woods checked from run plays into pass plays and they worked.
As the game wore on, Woods showed more confidence throwing the football. The best example was the scoring toss to Luke Frazier. It was a good throw, the kind veteran quarterbacks make.
"Donovan made a nice throw where I could go up and get it," said Frazier. "His throw really made the play easy for me."
One of the best things that Woods did was he passed the ball around to four different receivers, each finishing with two receptions.
"We have playmakers out there," said Vernand Morency, who admitted the improvement in the passing game will help him out plenty. "You've got D'Juan (Woods), Luke (Frazier), Prentiss (Elliott), Billy (Bajema) and Charlie (Johnson) at tight ends. We've got a number of playmakers and when the ball goes up they'll fight for it. The line gave great protection and Donovan was out there playing seven-on-seven."
Don't expect Oklahoma State to ever look like Texas Tech, but Woods showed that he is quite capable. Don't be surprised to see the Cowboys put the ball up as many as 20-25 times in future Big 12 games.
3. Why did the Cowboys call a timeout on that early third-down play that ended up being a touchdown?
As Donovan Woods was taking the snap and running up the middle for the three yards needed for the first down, wide receiver Luke Frazier was calling for the timeout as he was directed to do by the bench. That's a little like taking points off the scoreboard, but after the timeout the Cowboys came out and ran the toss to Vernand Morency. Thanks to some big blocks, including one by Frazier, the play went the distance, not for a first down but a touchdown.
"It was a great thing," said Morency of the score. "We wanted to come out and play physical and we got that done. I have to tell you, sometimes it works and sometimes they don't."
Morency went 58 yards down a sideline that Barry Sanders once sprinted down on his way to a Heisman Trophy. Yes, Sanders scored on a long touchdown run on TV down that very same route.
4. What was the call on the touchdown pass at the end of the half from Donovan Woods to Prentiss Elliott?
The Cowboys aren't giving out the call, but Les Miles said during the timeout that offensive coordinator Mike Gundy and wide receivers coach and passing coordinator Todd Monken cooked up a play where they could get Elliott loose down the middle, from there it was pure execution and athletic talent.
"We had kind of talked about running that play in the second quarter (bootleg pass), but time hadn't allowed for it. Then we had the situation and coach made a great call. We executed and got it done," Donovan Woods said.
"We're running the ball until we get to halftime," said Miles. "Then we had an opportunity when we got a couple of first downs. Our staff suggested a play that was right on the money. Our quarterback executed really well and Prentiss made a great catch."
Woods left no room for error. He snapped the ball so late that it was touchdown or nothing. Elliott had to get in the end zone, and took an acrobatic plunge to get there.
"I really didn't know that time was out," said Elliott. "I just knew that I wanted to be in the end zone."
5. What does this win do for OSU?
Well, you've heard phrases like under the radar screen and behind the scenes, but they no longer apply to these Cowboys after Saturday in the Rocky Mountains.
Right after the game Les Miles and Vernand Morency talked to everybody from the Cowboy Network to ABC Sports to ESPN Radio to all the media at the stadium. The word is out.
Les Miles says it best: "This football team has confidence. This football thinks they are pretty darn good."
Every goal the Cowboys have is still able to be conquered. For the first time since 1997 the Cowboys are 5-0, and there is not a game on the schedule, not a single game, that this team isn't capable of winning.
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