Oklahoma State Football: Grading All 22 Starters from the Iowa State Game

Ricky FrechCorrespondent IOctober 21, 2012

Oklahoma State Football: Grading All 22 Starters from the Iowa State Game

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    The Oklahoma State Cowboys desperately needed to get a big win over the Iowa State Cyclones this weekend after laying a stinker against the Kansas Jayhawks the previous week.

    They came out and beat up on the higher-ranked Cyclones, winning by 21 points. This was just what the doctor ordered for Mike Gundy's squad, especially as the Pokes move towards the real meat of their schedule.

    As a team, the Cowboys played well across the board, but some guys stand out more than others.

J.W. Walsh

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    Final Grade: A

    J.W. really showed off his arm this weekend with 415 yards passing. That's not a number we're likely to see often, because I really doubt the Cowboys want to see their dual-threat QB throw the ball 47 times every game.

    That said, Walsh played well all-around, adding 50 yards rushing and a TD to his passing numbers. It's even more impressive when you factor in that he was playing without Tracy Moore, his best deep threat this season (although Charlie Moore may have stolen that role). 

Joseph Randle

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    Final Grade: A+

    Randle sure did shrug off his lackluster performance against Kansas quickly, didn't he?

    He busted through the Iowa State defense for 156 yards rushing and two TDs, showing off his breakaway ability on a huge 62-yard run in the third quarter.

    All in a day's work for Oklahoma State's best player.

Charlie Moore

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    Final Grade: A+

    As I mentioned earlier, Charlie Moore really stepped up in the absence of Tracy Moore and Isaiah Anderson.

    His electrifying 74-yard catch got the crowd in the game and gave the Cowboys momentum going into the half. 

    Moore grabbed seven other passes and looked like a star in the making all day long.

Josh Stewart

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    Final Grade: B+

    Stewart continues to assert himself as J.W. Walsh's safety blanket, grabbing 13 catches for 89 yards.

    He's done well stepping into that role and looks like Wes Welker out there. A costly red-zone fumble keeps his grade down some.

Blake Jackson

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    Final Grade: A-

    Oklahoma State really needed guys to step up with Tracy Moore and Isaiah Anderson out. Charlie Moore is the name most people are going to talk about, but don't forget about Blake Jackson (or Blake Webb, as FX's announcer was fond of calling him).

    Jackson only had four catches, but he made the most of them, racking up 96 yards total. Most of those plays came down the seam ,and as a pass-catching tight end, that's a place Jackson can make a big impact all season.

Justin Horton

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    Final Grade: B

    Horton's grade is a "B" because he got injured before he could really get started.

    However, he did have two 30-plus yard receptions before going down, so you have to give him credit for his electric play prior to injury.

Parker Graham

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    Final Grade: B

    The offensive line as a whole bounced back impressively against Iowa State.

    Graham did a great job in pass-blocking and helped open some big holes for Randle. The word to describe his game is "solid."

Daniel Koenig

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    Final Grade: C+

    Koenig also had a pretty good game, but he gets downgraded a bit due to a bad false start on the goal line.

    I also saw him beaten a couple of times on outside runs. However, it was nothing like last week's struggles.

Jonathan Rush

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    Final Grade: B

    Rush's day was pretty much a mirror image of Parker Graham's. The left side of the line was steady all day but didn't do anything to write home about.

    I will say that many of Joseph Randle's biggest runs came up the middle, but that was due to the next two guys on the list.

Lane Taylor

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    Final Grade: A

    At times, Lane Taylor looked like the best pulling guard in the nation against Iowa State.

    His blocks opened up Joseph Randle on both of his TD runs, and both came on pulls from Taylor. Other than that, Taylor did a great job protecting his QB and was the standout lineman of the day.

Evan Epstein

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    Final Grade: A-

    Epstein was right there with Lane Taylor, opening up lanes for Joseph Randle all day, particularly on Randle's 62-yard scamper.

    He'd grade out as high, if not higher than Taylor if it weren't for an injury early that held him out for a quarter or two.

Cooper Bassett

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    Final Grade: B+

    Bassett's play isn't going to show in the stat column because he never could put Iowa State's QB on his back, but he did a great job pressuring the quarterback, especially in the second half.

    His frenzied play led to quite a few bad throws and almost forced an interception or two.

Ryan Robinson

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    Final Grade: C+

    Robinson was pretty much invisible all day. He did a decent-enough job stopping the run by taking on blockers, but it wasn't anything to write home about.

    His single tackle for loss brings him up from a "C," but he was the definition of average.

James Castleman

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    Final Grade: C+

    James Castleman's game can be summed up almost exactly the same as Ryan Robinson's. 

    He did his job, but he didn't do much to really impress outside of a few times that he penetrated the line to wreck havoc in the backfield. Those instances were few and far between.

Calvin Barnett

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    Final Grade: A-

    Much like Cooper Bassett's, Barnett's contributions to the team aren't going to show up in the stat column this week.

    He was in the Iowa State backfield all day long, hitting the QB twice and forcing countless incompletions with his pressure. Add in a batted-down pass at the line, and you have a great performance from Barnett.

Shaun Lewis

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    Final Grade: A+

    Shaun Lewis is quickly becoming my favorite Oklahoma State player to watch because he does almost everything right at the linebacker position.

    This week, he was all over the place but made his living in the backfield with great pressure, including a big sack late in the game. 

Alex Elkins

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    Final Grade: B-

    Elkins played a good game this week but didn't have as many stops as you'd like to see from the linebacker position.

    That said, he joined in on the late blitzing party and made both Iowa State quarterbacks look flustered late in the game.

Caleb Lavey

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    Final Grade: B

    Lavey grabbed the most tackles this week, which is exactly what I want to see out of my middle linebacker.

    He doesn't make the big, sexy plays that Shaun Lewis does, but he's the rock in the middle of the defense, and he performed well this weekend.

Broderick Brown

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    Final Grade: C+

    Brown started the day poorly, giving up a big gain on the first play of the game, but he got back in line for the most part and played decently.

    He made some key stops in the running game and didn't look out of position as often as he has in the past.

    You'd like to see him get an interception or at least break up a pass, but it was an okay day at the office overall for Brown.

Justin Gilbert

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    Final Grade: B

    Gilbert showed flashes of how good he could be, while also showing how far he has to come as a cover corner this week.

    He completely lost coverage in the end zone early, but Jared Barnett completely missed his receiver. However, Gilbert quickly redeemed himself by sprinting back 15 yards and breaking up a TD pass after getting fooled by a flea flicker.

    He has the talent to be a premiere player, but he has to put it together on an every-down basis as the team moves forward.

Shamiel Gary

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    Final Grade: B+

    Gary is possibly the source of my greatest joy and greatest despair when watching this defense play.

    On one play he'll come up and jar the ball away from somebody to force a huge turnover, but then on the very next he'll get juked out of his shoes and give up a big gainer on a screen pass.

    That said, it was more good than bad this week, and I'm hopeful that he'll continue trending this way as he becomes a very good safety.

Daytawion Lowe

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    Final Grade: A

    Lowe had an amazing one-handed interception in the second half, and that alone would give him a good grade in this article.

    However, he almost had another pick earlier on, and he did a great job in run support all day long. Lowe has taken the next step in my eyes after putting up a decent 2011 campaign.

Quinn Sharp

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    Final Grade: B

    Sharp was his usual masterful self in the punting and kickoff game, but his field-goal kicks were a little off this week.

    True, both of his misses came from 40-plus yards; however, you've come to expect that Sharp will make those. He'll get back on track next week against TCU.