When and where: September 21, 2019, Chapman Stadium, Tulsa, OK, 3:30 PM ET
The Wyoming Cowboys head on their second road trip of the season for Saturday’s afternoon showdown with the Tulsa Golden Hurricane. Oklahoma State spoiled the Golden Hurricane’s homecoming in a 40-21 Week 3 loss. The Cowboys, on the other hand, have won their first three games of the season against Missouri, Texas State and Idaho. They’ll try to extend that record to 4-0 when attempting to exploit Tulsa’s vulnerable run defense.
Can Smith be consistent for the Cowboys?
Imagine the sort of balance the Cowboys could have on offense if tailback Trey Smith ran the ball like he ran in Week 3 every night. Granted, Idaho couldn’t stop a cold on defense, but the ability of Smith to so adequately exploit their defensive front might have been the confidence boost he needed to play with more consistency.
He finished the game against the Vandals with 17 carries for 152 yards and two touchdowns. That performance came after he mustered only 52 yards on 16 carries against Texas State and six carries for 16 yards against Missouri State.
He should see plenty of carries on Saturday after watching running back Chuba Hubbard and Oklahoma State expose Tulsa’s defensive front. Wyoming freshman quarterback Sean Chambers can’t be depended on to drop back consistently and win with his arm. Even with Xazavian Valladay expected to return from an ankle injury and resume his running back duties, Smith should still see plenty of work on offense. The two running backs should be used early and often against a Golden Hurricane defense giving up 186.7 rushing yards per game.
Tulsa can’t stop the ground attack
Tulsa’s defensive line will have nightmares about Oklahoma State running back Chuba Hubbard for the rest of the season. Oklahoma State basically put the passing offense on the backburner and put all of their efforts into pounding the ball on the ground with the sophomore, who finished the game with 32 carries for 256 yards and three touchdowns. It was literally a one-man circus act watching Hubbard run up and down the field.
Perhaps the most shocking part was how effortless he ran the ball. Tulsa had holes on the defensive front big enough for a car to drive through. They never gave themselves a chance by repeatedly losing the battle in the trenches.
They’ll look to clean things up with the Cowboys coming to town on Week 4. It’ll be interesting to see what adjustments they try to make when facing a team averaging 241.3 rushing yards per game. It’s no secret the Cowboys are going to try to test they run defense as well. The Golden Hurricane will be heavily-dependent on quarterback Zach Smith to be productive on offense if the defense gets exposed for a second straight week.
Smith wasn’t necessarily bad against Oklahoma State—228 passing yards for one touchdown—but they will need him to be even more productive to give them a better shot at winning.
- Cowboys are 2-5 ATS in their last 7 games following a ATS loss.
- Cowboys are 5-16 ATS in their last 21 games in September.
- Golden Hurricane are 18-7-1 ATS in their last 26 games following a ATS loss.
- Golden Hurricane are 15-7 ATS in their last 22 home games vs. a team with a winning road record.
- Golden Hurricane are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games after allowing more than 450 total yards in their previous game.
- Golden Hurricane are 13-4 ATS vs. a team with a winning record.