STILLWATER — Though Oklahoma State will be featuring a new starting running back with the loss of Joseph Randle, who declared for the NFL Draft, the Cowboys didn’t focus on the ground game — electing more to focus on the quarterbacks — in Saturday’s spring game where the Orange squad won 17-7.
With first-year offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich looking for a fast tempo — and new starting running Jeremy Smith known more as a bruising back — the Cowboys turned to the air early and often and utilized the running game about as much as the kicking game the past few years.
“We knew it was going to be like that just because coach Gundy was with the quick whistle for the running backs today just to keep them healthy,” said Smith, who had just six carries for 2 yards for the Orange squad. “Our whole plan was just to go ahead and work on the passing game and fix things that we could work on with that.”
The two squads combined for 14 yards rushing on 37 carries — while the Cowboys went to the air 95 times. The final rushing tally was boosted thanks to Caleb Muncrief, who had a few big runs late to finish with a game-high 42 yards on five attempts.
With the amount of passes thrown, fans were able to get a good assessment from the trio of quarterbacks for OSU — Clint Chelf, Wes Lunt and J.W. Walsh. And the numbers weren’t anything astounding.
Chelf started 12 of 19 with 165 yards, but went just 2 of 9 for 3 yards in the third quarter and ultimately finished with 17 of 34 for 204 yards and the touchdown. Lunt went 15 for 27 with 122 yards and Walsh was 13 of 23 for 123 yards while splitting time for the White squad — they both also threw interceptions, while Walsh did record the first touchdown of the game with a 24-yard pass to Blake Webb.