Oklahoma State quarterback Mason Rudolph, linebacker Chad Whitener and punter Zach Sinor gave Cowboy football a sweep in the Big 12 Conference weekly awards. In the history of the Big 12, this feat has only been accomplished one other time – by OSU in 1997.
On Oct. 4, 1997, Cowboy quarterback Tony Lindsay, strong safety Trent Alexander and return specialist R.W. McQuarters led the Cowboys to a 42-16 win over Texas in Stillwater. Two days later, the Big 12 named the Oklahoma State trio the winners of their weekly awards, and it would be 18 years before another sweep.
Rudolph, who picked up his second Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week award of 2015, completed 16-of-24 passes for 352 yards with five touchdowns against no interceptions in OSU's 49-29 victory over then-No. 5 TCU, which was perhaps the most impressive win for any team in college football this season. Playing on the biggest stage of his career to date, Rudolph set career highs with five touchdown passes and a 258.6 passer rating. His five touchdown passes matched the fourth-highest single-game total in school history and were the most ever for a Cowboy facing a ranked opponent. Rudolph didn't pile up his numbers by inching the ball down the field - he averaged 22.0 yards per completion, 14.7 yards per attempt and had touchdown passes of 48 yards, 50 yards, 82 yards and 74 yards. In his last three games, Rudolph has thrown eight touchdowns against just one interception. He has passed for 2,834 yards this season, a mark that ranks fifth in school history and his the second-most ever for an OSU sophomore, trailing only the 3,145 yards from Josh Fields in 2002.
Whitener, a first-time winner of the Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week award, was one yard away from notching two interception returns for touchdowns against Heisman Trophy-hopeful Trevone Boykin. As it was, Whitener logged a career-high 12 tackles and picked off two passes – one of which he returned 42 yards for a touchdown and the other of which he returned 23 yards to the TCU one-yard line to set up a J.W. Walsh touchdown run on the very next play. Whitener's two interceptions made him just the 10th player in school history to pick off more than one pass in a game. Whitener, who came to OSU as a walk-on and was thrust into the starting lineup when Ryan Simmons was lost for the season in week five, has 52 tackles, six tackles for loss, two sacks and two interceptions on the season.
A two-time winner of the Big 12 Special Teams Player of the Week, Sinor punted nine times against TCU, with six of those nine punts downed inside the 20 yard line, three downed inside the 10 yard line and two downed inside the TCU five yard line. Field position was a vital component of the Cowboys' win over the fifth-ranked Horned Frogs, as the average start for an OSU drive was the 34 yard line, while the average start for a TCU drive was the 23 yard line, thanks largely to the work of Sinor and the OSU punt cover unit. His six punts downed inside the 20 matched a school record set by Barry Vincent against Colorado in 1991. Of Sinor's nine punts against TCU, only one yielded a return of more than two yards.
Oklahoma State returns to action at Iowa State on Nov. 14 at 2:30 p.m. The game is being broadcast on ESPN and the Cowboy Radio Network.
OSU’s 2015 Big 12 Offensive Players of the Week
Oct. 5 – Mason Rudolph, QB
Nov. 2 – James Washington, WR
Nov. 9 – Mason Rudolph, QB
OSU’s 2015 Big 12 Defensive Players of the Week
Sept. 28 – Emmanuel Ogbah, DE
Oct. 12 – Emmanuel Ogbah, DE
Nov. 2 – Emmanuel Ogbah, DE
Nov. 9 – Chad Whitener, LB
OSU’s 2015 Big 12 Special Teams Players of the Week
Sept. 28 - Ben Grogan, PK
Oct. 12 – Zach Sinor, P
Nov. 9 – Zach Sinor, P