Sunday, November 13, 2011

Second-ranked Oklahoma State crushes Texas Tech, 66-6


— Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy trusts his second-ranked Cowboys can handle the mounting pressure as they approach their final two games.

After beating Texas Tech 66-6 on Saturday, No. 2 Oklahoma State is likely two more victories away from playing for the national title.

“There is pressure. Each week I know you can feel it” said Gundy, whose team is 10-0 for the first time in school history. “But it’s our responsibility to manage it.”

“But I believe in the leadership of this team, that they feel the importance of getting ready for the next game.”

Brandon Weeden threw for 423 yards and five touchdowns and Joseph Randle ran for three more scores to lead Oklahoma State.

The Cowboys, second in the BCS standings this week, next (7-0 Big 12) play at Iowa State before closing their season at home against Oklahoma in the Bedlam game.

Weeden, who completed 31 of 37 passes, threw touchdown passes of 2, 27, 28, 48 and 66 yards, and had no interceptions before his backup came in late in the third quarter. Justin Blackmon and Josh Cooper each had more than 100 receiving yards.

Weeden, 28, said the team isn’t listening to the chatter about their season.

“Everyone has their opinion about where we are as a team,” he said. “But really and truly the guys in the locker room, they don’t buy into it. We’re far enough along here, we’ve got something special going on, and they guys are just focused on getting better next week.”

It was the Red Raiders’ most lopsided loss ever and the most points allowed in program history. Seth Doege completed 25 of 43 passes for a season-low 169 yards and an interception for Texas Tech (5-5, 2-5).

The Cowboys dominated from the start, going up 21-0 in the first quarter. They ran at will and Weeden wasn’t pressured much. He was sacked just once.

“I wouldn’t trade him for anyone in the country,” Gundy said. “I know there are some good ones out there, but I wouldn’t put him on the trading block.”

Stewart and Blackmon had two touchdowns each. Randle’s rushing scores went for 2, 1 and 10 yards, and he finished with 78 yards on 18 carries.

Hershel Sims led the Cowboy with 109 yards on 13 carries.

The Cowboys led the nation in takeaways coming into the game (31) and got three more against the Red Raiders.

They scored off all three first-half turnovers by Texas Tech, including a fumbled kickoff return by the Red Raiders. Ben McRoy fumbled the ball into the end zone and teammate Kenny Williams recovered it momentarily when it rolled out onto the field.

Williams lost the handle and couldn’t find the ball, which eventually was recovered at the 3 and taken in for a score by Josh Stewart to make it 35-0.

About two minutes earlier Stewart had caught a 27-yard touchdown pass from Weeden to make it 21-0. He got another TD on a 66-yarder from Weeden just before the senior quarterback left the game.

Texas Tech has lost three straight since winning 41-38 at Oklahoma, and has been outscored 159-33.

“We got to a point about Oklahoma, we thought we were playing pretty good,” Red Raiders coach Tommy Tuberville said. “And then we come back the next week and we played flat and we just never recouped. We’ll find out a lot about ourselves the next two weeks.”

It is the second time this season that the Cowboys have led by 49 points at half. Oklahoma State was up 56-7 against Kansas early last month in Stillwater.

The 49-0 halftime score was the most points scored against Texas Tech in a half and the Red Raiders’ largest deficit since at least 2000.

Texas Tech didn’t score until early in the third quarter.


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