Heart of Dallas Bowl 2013: Biggest Takeaways from Oklahoma State's Blowout Win

Rob GoldbergFeatured ColumnistJanuary 1, 2013

DALLAS, TX - JANUARY 01:  Head coach Mike Gundy of the Oklahoma State Cowboys carries the Heart of Dallas Bowl trophy after a 58-14 win against the Purdue Boilermakers during the Heart of Dallas Bowl at Cotton Bowl on January 1, 2013 in Dallas, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Oklahoma State proved that not all bowl games have to be close with its 58-14 throbbing of Purdue.

This victory is not only meaningful for this season, but it has broader implications heading into next year as well.

Here are the biggest takeaways from the Heart of Dallas Bowl. 


The Cowboys Have a Lot of Depth

Oklahoma State got a lot of production from a lot of different places on Tuesday. 

Overall, the team scored seven touchdowns and totaled 524 yards from scrimmage, but that is only the beginning. Five different players completed a pass, seven players had a rushing attempt and nine different players caught a pass. 

It is easy to defend one great player, but it is nearly impossible for any defense to shut down this type of diversity.


Clint Chelf Can Be a Starting Quarterback

Due to injuries and other reasons, Oklahoma State rotated three different quarterbacks this season, each with various levels of success.

Clint Chelf was the oldest of the trio, with J.W. Walsh and Wes Lunt both being freshmen. However, the junior struggled at times with his accuracy and decision-making.

The bowl game, however, was a different story. Chelf completed 17 of his 22 passes and threw three touchdowns with zero interceptions. It was by far his best game of the season, and it should give the coaching staff confidence heading into next season.

It remains to be seen what direction the team will go in, but it now knows that Chelf is a legitimate option for the future. 


The Big Ten is in Trouble

While Purdue was not one of the top teams in the Big Ten this year, the team's ineptitude in the bowl game highlighted the league's overall struggles.

Wisconsin, Michigan and Nebraska all lost close games on New Year's Day while Northwestern was able to win its matchup with Mississippi State. Overall, the conference finished the bowl season with a 2-5 record.

It seems like every year, the Big Ten enters with a lot of hype, and lately, it has failed to reach the lofty expectations. It hurts that Penn State and Ohio State were ineligible for the postseason, but that does not excuse the rest of the league.

Oklahoma State is a good team, but this type of loss is simply embarrassing for Purdue and the entire conference.


Oklahoma State Will Be a Contender Next Season

The Cowboys had the No. 4 scoring offense in the nation this season with an average of 44.7 points per game. The scary thing is that unit should be even better a year from now.

Oklahoma State returns all three quarterbacks, although now each will have game experience to fall back on. 

In addition, skilled playmakers like Joseph Randle and Josh Stewart should be back next season and could be even better. 

If the defense can get to a point where it can come close to matching the offensive production, this team will be extremely difficult to beat next year.