Brewer Believes Competition, QB The Key

So who does have the best offense in the 2008 Holiday Bowl? If you look solely at the numbers then Oregon is scoring more than Oklahoma State, 41.92 to 41.58 points a game. Both teams pride themselves on being balanced but each lean on the run game as the heavy end of the offense. The Ducks waddle for 277.83 yards a game on the ground while the Cowboys only gallop at 256 yards a game rushing.

Total offense adds up in the Cowboys favor -- 489.25 yards to Oregon's 478.17 yards a contest. This would make for a true test if the two teams had played the same, or at least a similar schedule. They did not. Oklahoma State faced four ranked team, and its three losses were to teams all in the top three in the nation when they played them. Oregon saw then No. 9 Southern Cal and finished with a ranked Oregon State.

It is the better competition that the Cowboys saw that co-offensive coordinator Gunter Brewer says gives them an extra dose of confidence that their offense will play their part in the offensive explosion advertised by the Holiday Bowl for their game every season.

"We hope so because of our competition in the Big 12 and, in particular, the Big 12 South. And don't forget our out-of-conference schedule with Houston and Troy, and those two teams are in bowl games representing their conference in a strong way," said Brewer.

"Anytime you play that level of play it should help you and send you down the road that much more confident. The better teams that you play and win, it creates more things for you," Brewer added.

The Cowboy playmakers also boost the Cowboys confidence. Oregon has good receivers but nobody like All-American Dez Bryant, who has amazed all season long. "We've been able to see him make incredible catches with those hands," claimed Brewer.

Another added boost for the Cowboys offense may come with the time of the season. Oklahoma State fans couldn't help but notice that Zac Robinson had his best rushing game of the season against the Sooners.

Did the Cowboys use Robinson's wheels and the threat of option more as just that, a threat, during the season? No question, Robinson and his health was a vital key to the season but now at the end of the season with no games left on the schedule caution can go out the window. Robinson running is back as more of a staple in the offense.

"It is. We had some things designed for him to run and obviously as you get close to the end of the season you can lean more to that because you do give more of a window of opportunity for him to get injured when you create things like that," explained Brewer.

"Earlier in the season there was a point in time we were leery of that. Now that it is a one-game season there are always cases that we want to get the ball in the hands of a guy that makes plays." continued Brewer.

"You saw what happened in the Bedlam game. He has done that many times before. He has some time to heal up some bumps and bruises. We don't have to worry about that until next game, what is against Georgia next September."

Oh and Robinson has seen the old highlights now and been briefed. When OSU hammered Wyoming 62-14 in the 1988 Holiday Bowl Mike Gundy caught a pass from Heisman Trophy winner Barry Sanders. The pass covered 17 yards to the one and set up a score next play.

"You guys need to tell him to put that in, a throw back to the quarterback," said Robinson last week to the media.

"I was a better athlete than he is," said Gundy of the reason he caught a pass in the Holiday Bowl and Robinson has yet to catch one in college.

"I didn't say that," said Robinson when asked if he was implying he was a better receiver than Gundy. "I have more experience at wide receiver than he does."

Gundy said, "He only played a year at quarterback (in high school). He had played a lot of wide receiver, so maybe we should put something like that in there for him," said the Cowboys head coach and former quarterback and bowl game pass catcher.

You'll have to tune in and check to see if Robinson gets to do a Mike Gundy impersonation of catching the ball. One thing is certain, in a foot race in their prime, Robinson beats Gundy.

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