Don’t Give up Big Plays
The Oklahoma State offense is ranked No. 13 in the nation for a reason: it can score points in bunches. The Cowboys have two dual-threat quarterbacks that they rotate in and out every game to ensure the offense never loses momentum. The Longhorns will give up points to the Cowboys but they must prevent big plays to keep the confidence of Oklahoma State as low as possible. Rushing the passer would be a good start as the quarterbacks are turnover-prone but tackling will be the key. As simple as it sounds, Texas must be on its toes the entire game and make the Cowboys work for the points they get.
Push the Tempo
In addition to being the No. 13 scoring offense in the country, Oklahoma State also possesses the No. 20 scoring defense in the country, allowing an average of just 19.7 points per game. Texas needs to quicken the tempo on offense to open up easy opportunities to score points. The Cowboys do a good job of neutralizing their opponents’ strengths, with the exception being their loss to West Virginia, in which they gave up 30 points. Texas does its best work on offense when carrying the ball more than 40 times so look for Malcolm Brown and Joe Bergeron to break out in this game with at least 20 carries apiece. Texas needs to keep the tempo moving by rotating players in and out at positions they can afford to do so, like the running back position.
Swarm the Passer
Although the Oklahoma State signal-callers possess dual-threat capabilities that usually gives the Longhorns trouble, Texas can neutralize this by rushing the passer often, something it does better than most teams in the country. When J.W. Walsh and Clint Chelf are pressured they tend to make mistakes, as evidenced by their combined nine interceptions this season. If Texas can get in the backfield and make the Oklahoma State quarterbacks throw the ball in a hurry, the scoreboard may look a bit different than the Cowboys are used to seeing it.