Football journalist Hannah Robbins discusses Tulsa’s crushing loss to the Cowboys after a strong first half put them ahead on Saturday afternoon
H.A. Chapman Stadium was a sea of orange with some blue on Saturday for TU’s first home game. Coming off the win against San Jose State, there was hope that Tulsa could continue to make big plays, but the Golden Hurricane tried for gutsy ploys at the loss of any points in the second half, which led to a 19-point defeat.
The Cowboys had a strong start with Chuba Hubbard running straight down the center of the field for a 75-yard touchdown on the first play of the game. Tulsa struggled on their first drive, failing to make a single first down before returning the ball to Oklahoma State.
Tulsa seemed to have fallen asleep when the Cowboys started their next drive. After that, the Golden Hurricane’s defense had put the Cowboys in third down territory, a pass interference call put OSU in field goal range. Hubbard ran the 30 yards to score another touchdown, putting Tulsa down 14 points in four minutes.
Once again, Tulsa failed to put together a drive, punting without having earned a first down. When Oklahoma State returned to the field, Tulsa suddenly remembered they were actually playing a football game. Short gains by Oklahoma State left them barely making progress down the field, but an unsportsmanlike conduct foul on Tulsa put the Cowboys in field goal range. Tulsa managed to keep OSU to a 37-yard field goal, widening the gap to 17 points.
Nine minutes into the first quarter, Tulsa finally put together a first down on a run by Shamari Brooks. Corey Taylor II brought Tulsa onto the Cowboy’s half of the field for the first time that game, and Zach Smith’s 39-yard pass to Keylon Stokes brought Tulsa on the board.
Then the Golden Hurricane woke up, with Reggie Robinson II intercepting Oklahoma State’s next drive. Unfortunately, Tulsa could not capitalize after Smith was sacked on Tulsa’s first play. After a pair of scoreless drives, Tulsa’s penalties against OSU brought the Cowboys into field goal range. Matt Ammendola’s 36-yard field goal brought Oklahoma State to a 13-point lead.
Tulsa took the field with renewed energy in response. Brooks ran the ball towards OSU’s end zone, giving Smith the opportunity to connect with Sam Crawford Jr. for 44 yards, putting Tulsa three yards from a touchdown. Brooks brought it in on the next play, closing the gap to six points.
OSU seemed shocked at this development, and failed to start anything on their next drive. With eight minutes left in the half, Tulsa was ready to play football. Corey Taylor II and Brooks got the ball down the field quickly. After receiving the ball for five short runs in a row, Brooks made it to the end zone on the sixth, with Jacob Rainey’s kick bringing Tulsa to lead.
Despite going into the third quarter one point ahead, Tulsa could not capitalize on their momentum. After three scoreless drives, OSU seemed to find their rhythm, with quarterback Samuel Sanders running 27 yards for a touchdown.
Tulsa failed to respond, and watched as Tylan Wallace ran 90 yards for the touchdown on OSU’s first play when they had possession. Tulsa’s next drive lead to nothing, but when Oklahoma State received the ball again, a fumble led to an opportunity for Tulsa.
Unfortunately, Tulsa was not able to get the ball into the end zone, and a poor call led to Tulsa forgoing a field goal in hopes of a touchdown. Instead of that score, however, the final play ended in Smith being sacked.
Neither team scored on their next set of drives, but Oklahoma State felt like adding insult to injury as the game wound down. Hubbard added his third touchdown of the night, bringing OSU to a lead of 19 points. Tulsa had the ball as the clock wound down, but mistakes and penalties prevented a second win for the Golden Hurricane, with a final score of 40-21.