John E. Hoover: With or without Pickens’ support, OSU routs Texas

John E. Hoover: With or without Pickens’ support, OSU routs Texas

STILLWATER — Even Boone Pickens might be happy today.

Then again, if he’s not, that’s on him.

Oklahoma State did endure a few problems of its own on Saturday, but still routed No. 22-ranked Texas 49-31.

OSU blocked three Texas extra points, returned one for a 2-point conversion of its own (and almost ran back a second for a score) and amassed 400 yards passing against a beleaguered Longhorn defense that could neither cover or tackle.

Texas’ hard-running tandem of D’Onta Foreman and Chris Warren combined for more than 250 yards rushing (Warren didn’t play in the second half) and the ‘Horns compiled more than 500 yards of offense.

But OSU’s offense was unstoppable, thanks to a shockingly lousy Texas defense that may see staff changes this week.

Pickens, who paid for the stadium that bears his name, spoke up Tuesday about his relationship with Cowboy head coach Mike Gundy. OSU’s self-proclaimed No. 1 fan then tried to clarify his comments with a vague Twitter statement on Saturday morning that didn’t exactly come out in support of Gundy.

“I have not placed a call to Mike Gundy in year,” Pickens said, in part. “It’s his program to run, not mine.

“Coach Gundy and I are united in the belief that the school I bigger than both of us. I wish Coach Gundy well. … I do not intend to talk about our relationship publicly going forward.”

It’s unclear what the OSU defense’s problem was, but Pickens’ sentiments clearly didn’t affect quarterback Mason Rudolph or the Cowboy offense. Neither did the Texas defense. OSU gained nearly 600 yards total offense and scored its most points ever against the Longhorns.

The visiting team had won seven in a row in this series, and after Texas erased a 14-0 OSU lead by scoring touchdowns on four consecutive cross-country drives to take a 25-23 lead, it looked like the ‘Horns might leave Payne County with a 10th straight victory (OSU’s only home win in the series came in 1997).

But Texas couldn’t convert an extra point. Instead of what should have been a 28-21 lead, the ‘Horns were up just 25-23.

Mason Rudolph immediately answered, hitting Jhajuan Seales on a 34-yard bomb down the left sideline and Jalen McClesekey on a quick slant and a 36-yard catch and run that put OSU up 30-25.

The Cowboys would never trail again.

McCleskey turned a deep over-the-middle throw from Rudolph into a 52-yard touchdown and a 37-25 OSU lead just 31 seconds before halftime, and the Longhorns were outclassed.

Rudolph completed 15-of-21 passes for 310 yards and three touchdowns in the first half alone. McCleskey caught four of Rudolph’s first-half throws for 109 yards and the two touchdowns.

OSU (3-2, 1-1 Big 12) hosts Iowa State next week, while Texas (2-2, 0-1) meets Oklahoma in the Cotton Bowl.


Hoover wrote for the Tulsa World for 24 years before joining The Franchise, where he's now co-host of "Further Review" on The Franchise Tulsa (weekdays 12-3, fm107.9/am1270) . In his time at the World, Hoover won numerous writing and reporting awards, including in 2011 National Beat Writer of the Year from the Associated Press Sports Editors for his work covering the Oklahoma Sooners. Hoover also covered Oklahoma State, Arkansas, Oral Roberts and the NFL as a beat writer. From 2012 to 2016, Hoover was the World's lead sports columnist. As a columnist, Hoover won national awards in 2012 and 2014 from the National Athletic Trainers Association for reporting on sports medicine and in 2015 won first place in sports columns from the Oklahoma Society of Professional Journalists. After receiving a journalism degree from East Central University, Hoover worked at newspapers in Ada, Okmulgee, Tahlequah and Waynesville, Mo. He played football at Ada High School and grew up in North Pole, Alaska. Hoover and his family live in Broken Arrow.

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