PHOTO/Oklahoma State University Athletics
Oklahoma State running back Chuba Hubbard started the season with a career high 221 yards rushing at Oregon State. Saturday in Tulsa he broke that mark going for 256 on a career-high 32 carries in OSU's 40-21 win.
Hubbard scored on the game's first play, a 75 yard run through the middle of the TU defense. The Cowboys rolled to a 17-0 lead and looked to be heading for a blowout win but the Golden Hurricane did some damage in the running game, hit some key passes and outscored the Cowboys 21-3 the rest of the first half.
A Tulsa turnaround that ended the first half with TU on the high side 21-20 and Cowboys defensive coordinator Jim Knowles ready to make some changes. The Cowboys focused more on stopping the run in the second half by moving a safety into the box.
“It shows that we’ve got a mature team, even though they’re young guys,” Knowles said about his defenders adjusting to the adjustments. “The culture, they’re buying into the discipline and the toughness … they’re bowing up. That’s what a defense has to do. At some point, a defense has to take a stand, a physical stand, for the team to change momentum.”
There was a goal line stand late that snuffed out any hope the Hurricane had. On 4th and 5 from the OSU 6 yard line Cowboys safety Kolby Harvell-Peel blitzed TU quarterback Zach Smith and wrapped him up for a sack.
It turned out to be a game-winning play and a second half shutout for the OSU defense.
“I feel better now than I have in all these other games we’re in,” Mike Gundy told reporters after the game. “It’s nice for the defense to basically win the game, and that’s what they did.”
The defense will have to bow up this coming Saturday too as the Cowboys head to Austin to open up Big 12 play against the Texas Longhorns.
You can see Mike Gundy's post game interview session in the box below.