Oklahoma State Has Been Better Against the Pass, Still Has Room to Improve

first_imgWe’ve given Glenn Spencer’s defense its fair share of criticism this season. And they’ve earned it. They’ve shown a propensity to get beat deep, especially early in the season.After giving up 387 yards and four touchdowns in the air to Baylor, there were apparently some changes made on a fun plane ride back from Waco. Glenn Spencer would no longer be patrolling the sidelines and chest bumping Ramon Richards. He now sits next to Mike Yurcich in the booth for a better view of the offenseDuring the Cowboys’ current six-game winning streak, things have changed. The Cowboys have held teams below their passing average the last three games. See below.passingdThe Cowboys, which gave up a ton of big plays early in the year, are now tied for second in the conference in opponent’s long passing plays (10-plus yards). They haven’t finished better than No. 7 in the Big 12 in that stat for any of the last six seasons.The Cowboys are also currently No. 4 in the Big 12 in passing defense, allowing 252.8 per game. They also rank third in touchdown-to-interception ratio (against).tdintThis last week an overall scheme change saw the Cowboys in the 3-3-5 defense West Virginia is known for.Mike Gundy talked about the choice to swap defensive schemes.“I’m not a defensive guy and I don’t micromanage and I let people do their jobs,” said Gundy. “They felt like that was what’s best, Glenn and the staff and so I said, if that’s what you guys want and you’re comfortable with that we’ll do it, and I thought they were pretty dang good at it.”Things aren’t perfect on the defensive side of the ball. The Cowboys are currently No. 67 in opponent points per drive (2.29). That’s fourth in the Big 12 behind West Virginia (1.66), TCU (1.92) and Baylor (2.14). They need to turn more opponent TDs into FGs.The Cowboys finish the season against two high-powered offenses on the road. Both teams average 300-plus yards in the air and have dynamic playmakers. Though TCU has been up and down this year, they’ve shown the ability to put up points. They are 44th in the country in points per drive at 2.47 (OSU is at 2.91).Oklahoma has hit the 50-point mark four times this year and has their own Biletnikoff semifinalist in Dede Westbrook for Baker Mayfield to throw to. The Sooners are No. 5 in the nation in points per drive, averaging a daunting 3.45.At this time last year, OSU’s defense seemed to run out of gas. Hopefully, the increased depth we’ve heard so much about can make a difference this year. It will need to if the Cowboys want a shot at their second Big 12 title.If you’re looking for the comments section, it has moved to our forum, The Chamber. You can go there to comment and holler about these articles, specifically in these threads. You can register for a free account right here and will need one to comment.If you’re wondering why we decided to do this, we wrote about that here. Thank you and cheers!last_img

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