The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Sports

November 25, 2007

OU forced Cowboys to get desperate early

By Shawn Hein

Commentary



NORMAN — Zac Robinson suffered a case of deja vu he would rather not recall.

The Oklahoma State quarterback fumbled on a key fourth-and-goal play last season in the Cowboys’ 27-21 loss to Oklahoma, which gave the Sooners the Big 12 South title.

It happened again on Saturday.

The circumstances were different, but the giveaway was just as costly.

Trailing 21-7 early in the second quarter, the Cowboys were driving into the red zone and ready to hold serve in what looked like an offensive shootout. OSU had first-and-goal at the OU 1, but Julius Crosslin was stonewalled twice and Robinson was stopped just short on third down.

Just a quarter and a half into the game, OSU already was facing a do-or-die possession. Robinson took the snap and tried to run it in over the right side. Appearing to be stopped short, Robinson reached for the goal line with the ball in his right arm.

Kingfisher native Curtis Lofton hit Robinson and was credited with forcing a fumble, which was recovered by D.J. Wolfe and returned to the 13.

No. 10 OU went on to 49-17 rout of the Cowboys, repeating as Big 12 South champions.

Under most circumstances, the call to go for the touchdown would have been preposterous. A field goal would have kept OSU within arm’s reach at 21-10 with 6:24 left in the first half.

But head coach Mike Gundy’s decision to go for six may have had more to do with his own defense’s inadequacies rather than the Cowboys’ offense.

OSU trailed by just 14 at the time and was nowhere near stopping OU. The Sooners shredded the Cowboys’ defense on their first three drives to the tune of 176 yards and three touchdowns.

Following Robinson’s fumble, OU proceeded to make it four for four with an 87-yard touchdown drive.

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