Oklahoma State freshman quarterback Wes Lunt's third career start lasted all of six plays Saturday against Louisiana-Lafayette (or Louisiana, should I say).
Initial reports indicated Lunt suffered a dislocated knee cap, but as it turns out, that may not be entirely accurate. Whatever the diagnosis, it doesn't appear the injury is serious with offensive coordinator Todd Monken saying after the game he hopes Lunt will be back in two weeks.
Source close to #okstate program says Lunt's injury NOT a dislocated kneecap. Still, knee injury not believed to be season-ending.— John Helsley (@jjhelsley) September 15, 2012
Lunt's injury gave Oklahoma State a chance to check out redshirt freshman J.W. Walsh who was seeing his first collegiate action in a game that wasn't already decided (he was 13 of 21 passing in the Pokes 84-0 win over Savannah State).
What the Cowboys' coaching staff found out is they have likely have two very good quarterbacks. After getting a 51 yard field goal following Lunt's injury, Walsh led Oklahoma State on five straight scoring drives including touchdown passes of 52, 20, and 32 yards. The Pokes led 44-0 at half and that was that.
The Cowboys racked up 732 yards of total offense - 412 coming from Walsh alone - and punted only once all day.
As for the penalties that killed Oklahoma State in their loss to Arizona, that problem was solved, at least for one weekend. OSU was flagged 15 times for 167 yards last week, a number that dropped to just 5 and five for 45 yards on Saturday.
Lost in the all the commotion caused by Lunt's injury, the story of the game may have been the play of Oklahoma State's defense. Granted the competition wasn't up to the level they'll see in the Big 12, but with Bill Young back on the sideline, OSU pitched a first half shutout and gave up only 24 points which included two meaningless fourth quarter touchdowns.
Oklahoma State now has a weekend off before the real competition begins. They will play host to Texas on September 29th who has their final tune up later tonight at Ole Miss.
Whether or not Lunt is able to return in time to face the Longhorns will surely be the hot topic of discussion over the next two weeks. What we found out today, however, is that whoever is under center is going to pose problems for Manny Diaz's defense.
Through three games, the Pokes have showed no signs of slowing down without Brandon Weeden pulling the trigger. They have a solid running game featuring arguably the best back in the Big 12 and a defense that is plenty capable of slowing down a Texas offense still trying to find its way.
Even if Lunt is healthy enough to play against Texas, you have to wonder how much he'll be able to practice between now and then. With Walsh's play today, that no longer seems to be as big of a concern as it might have been otherwise. Not to mention, Walsh gives OSU and added dimension with his ability to run the ball.
Last week's 59-38 loss to Arizona still leaves plenty of questions yet to be answered, but for one day at least, the Cowboys looked like a much better team with every intention of having a say in the Big 12 race come season's end. And one with two quarterbacks more than capable of keeping the Cowboys' offense humming.