6. Malcolm Rodriguez’s scoop-and-score
With the Cowboys holding an early 14-10 lead against the ranked Kansas State Wildcats, Malcolm Rodriguez scooped up a fumble and took it to the house, putting OSU ahead 21-10. The Cowboys would go on to defeat Kansas State by a score of 31-21.
Besides helping OSU get a win in its 2021 Big 12 Conference opener, this play was one of many in which Rodriguez demonstrated his value to the Cowboys. The former Wagoner star became OSU’s first defensive first-team All-America honoree in eight years after he posted 118 tackles, three sacks, and four forced fumbles in 2021.
5. Collin Oliver’s sack vs. Baylor
OSU freshman defensive end Collin Oliver burst upon the scene in the Cowboys’ October win at home against Baylor with a crucial sack.
With a 14-0 lead in the third quarter, Spencer Sanders threw an interception that gave the Bears the ball at the OSU 31-yard line. The Bears followed up on the potentially momentum-swinging turnover with a run for negative two yards, an incomplete pass, and an Oliver sack of quarterback Gerry Bohanon.
The Bears chose to punt, giving the Cowboys the ball back and helping OSU emerge victorious with a 24-14 win.
Perhaps just as importantly, this play highlighted Oliver as one of the nation’s best pass-rushers. In his first year in Stillwater, the former Edmond Santa Fe standout is second in the nation among all freshmen in total sacks (11.5) and has led a formidable OSU defensive line lead the nation in sacks (averaging 4.23 sacks per game).