Rudolph leads Oklahoma State past Central Arkansas 32-8
STILLWATER, Okla. (AP) Statistically, Mason Rudolph had one of the best games ever for an Oklahoma State quarterback.
Mike Gundy, the former Oklahoma State quarterback and Rudolph's coach, was more interested in how much more damage his star pupil could have done.
Rudolph passed for a career-high 401 yards to help Oklahoma State defeat Central Arkansas 32-8 on Saturday night. He completed 23 of 35 passes and connected with 11 receivers. It was the third-highest yardage total ever for a Cowboy sophomore and just the 13th 400-yard passing game in school history.
''It was good, could have been much better,'' Gundy said. ''I thought he missed at least five throws that he normally hits, particularly in the boundary, but he did come back and hit a lot of deep throws. He's still young. He's playing in his fifth game, so he's making some mistakes. He needs to be better, but he's making some key throws.''
Rudolph became the first Oklahoma State quarterback since 2012 to pass for more than 400 yards in a game. He tossed two touchdown passes in his first career home game.
''It was such a great feeling being home and having that great crowd cheering you on,'' he said. ''It was an awesome first experience. Our fans were awesome tonight and they really gave us some energy.''
David Glidden caught four of those passes for a career-high 145 yards and two touchdowns.
''In practice, we work a lot together, and this summer, we worked a lot together on our route-running and those kinds of things,'' Glidden said. ''It was just one of those deals where a couple of spots opened for us tonight, a couple of big plays, that hit. He put the ball on the money and things just worked out for us.''
The Cowboys (2-0) finished with 576 total yards, but they rushed 21 times for 73 yards in the first three quarters before padding their stats with 14 carries for 91 yards in the fourth.
''It's concerning,'' Oklahoma State offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich said. ''We have to do a better job of coming off the football, making sure that we're reading the right things, making sure that we're making adjustments, the calls that need to go in, making sure we're giving our guys a chance - it's everything. There's a lot of things that fall into that.''
Taylor Reed passed for 128 yards and a touchdown for the Bears (0-2), who were held to 220 total yards, including 92 yards rushing on 39 attempts.
''They're a good defense,'' Central Arkansas coach Steve Campbell said. ''We tip our hats off to them. We knew they were a good football team, and we were going to have to play a really good ballgame.''
It was the second straight defensive collapse for Central Arkansas, a Football Championship Subdivision program. The Bears surrendered 536 yards last week in a 45-16 loss to Samford.
Oklahoma State's Ben Grogan made a 31-yard field goal to open the scoring. Later in the first quarter, Chris Carson broke loose for a 21-yard touchdown run to push the Cowboys' lead to 10-0.
Both teams went scoreless in the second quarter. Oklahoma State outgained Central Arkansas 252 yards to 86 in the first half, but the Cowboys led just 10-0 at the break. Early in the second quarter, Central Arkansas' Tremon Smith returned an interception to the Oklahoma State 30, but two penalties and a sack took the Bears out of scoring range.
Early in the third quarter, Rudolph connected with Glidden in stride at about midfield. Glidden ran over a defender at the 30, then stepped through an ankle tackle near the goal line to finish a 67-yard touchdown reception.
Central Arkansas responded with a 39-yard touchdown pass from Reed to Desmond Smith. The Bears scored a two-point conversion to cut Oklahoma State's lead to 17-8.
Glidden's 31-yard touchdown catch from Rudolph pushed Oklahoma State's advantage to 26-8 early in the fourth quarter.
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