Miles Brings Offensive-Mindedness Back to OSU

Texas faces its second consecutive Okie state opponent when it travels to face OSU this week at Lewis Field in Stillwater. The challenge for the Horns is not near as great as facing OU in the Cotton Bowl, but it is a challenge they better prepare for as mightily if they don't want to see their season fall into a tailspin.

OSU is 2-3 so far in ‘01, with wins over Northwestern State and Louisiana Tech, and losses to A&M, Missouri and Southern Mississippi.

Oklahoma State is in its first year under coach Les Miles who replaced the fired Bob Simmons. Prior to taking the Cowboy head job, Miles spent the last three seasons as tight ends coach for the Dallas Cowboys. Before that, he served as Oklahoma State's offensive coordinator for three seasons, including the ‘97 season when the Cowboys finished the regular season 8-3 and played in the Alamo Bowl. That team ran Texas out of Lewis Field as you may recall.

During his previous OSU stint, Miles had the Pokes racking up some numbers. The ‘96 team posted 4,295 total yards, an average of 390.5 per game, fourth-best in OSU history. Two of the three years under Miles, the Cowboy offense had more than 4,000 total yards. The ‘97 Cowboy offense scored 332 points, the third-most in OSU history. Miles spent 15 years on the staffs of Colorado and Michigan (10 with the Wolverines, five with the Buffs), so he has been around winning programs.

Not surprisingly, the Cowboys are moving the football in ‘01 behind the quarterbacking of one Aso Pogi, a 6-4, 225 sophomore from Lawton, OK who is posting some nice numbers. In the Pokes’ triple-overtime loss Saturday to Missouri, Pogi threw for 272 yards and three TDs on 28 of 38 passing. For the season, Pogi has completed 96 of 148 passes for 1,008 yards and five TDs and has thrown just one INT. Former De Soto star Tatum Bell led the Cowboy ground attack going into the game with Missouri, in which he carried it 32 times for 117 yards before leaving the game with an injury. Bell's totals on the season are 422 rushing yards (3.8 per carry) and 61 receiving yards on nine catches. He is expected to play Saturday. WR Reshaun Woods, a 6-2, 195 soph. has been Pogi’s favorite receiving target. Woods caught seven passes for 75 yards against A&M and 10 for 139 in OSU’s opener against Southern Miss. He added eight for 98 last Saturday against Mizzou and has totaled 492 yards on 39 catches for the season.

Through five games, the Cowboys' offense is averaging 317.4 yards (212 through the air and 105.4 on the ground) and 21.6 points per games and is balanced between the run and the pass (numbers adjusted for sacks, 179 rushing plays and 177 passing plays).

Defensively, LB Dwayne Levels (6-2, 250 senior) remains from a group that OSU touted two years ago as the best ‘backer corps in the country. Terrence Robinson (6-1, 230 junior) is the other LB in OSU's 4-2-5. Safeties Marcus Jones (5-9, 195 senior) and Elbert Craig (6-2, 205 soph.) patrol the Poke secondary. NG LaWaylon Brown is massive at 6-5, 305, and posted eight tackles in the Cowboys’ 21-7 loss to A&M. Elbert leads the Oklahoma State defense with 51 tackles, including two TFLs, and an INT, with Levels and Robinson close behind with 44 tackles, including four TFLs, and 37 tackles, including five TFLs and a sack, respectively.

Return man Terrance Davis-Bryant is a threat, ranking fourth in the Big 12 in punt returns with a 13.3 yard per return average, and fifth in kickoff returns at 25.5. Davis-Bryant is also the team's second-leading receiver behind Woods with 14 catches for 112 yards. Punter Scott Elder can boom it, averaging 43.4 yards per punt so far this season. Field goal kicking has also been solid for OSU, with Luke Phillips nailing eight of his 10 attempts.

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