The school’s marketing director has claimed the Cowboys have “the most powerful offense inthe world” in an attempt to sell tickets. Wide receiver Adarius Bowman, an All-America candidate, thinks averaging 50 points a game is “realistic.”
All the while, Georgia has been listening. The No. 13 Bulldogs host the up-and-coming but unranked Cowboys on Saturday in Sanford Stadium (6:45 p.m., ESPN2).
“Yeah, we hear it,” defensive end Marcus Howard said. “We just want to go out there and play hard and let the pads do the talking.”
Oklahoma State was one of two teams in the country to average more than 200 yards passing and 200 yards rushing last year, and all its key parts return. Junior quarterback Bobby Reid was a semifinalist for the Davey O’Brien Award last year; junior tight end Brandon Pettigrew isexpected to be top flight NFL prospect by the season’s end; senior running back Dantrell Savage, a Columbus native, was honorable mention All-Big 12 last year, and Bowman set a Big 12 record with 300 receiving yards against Kansas last season.
“I’m not surprised that they feel that way,” Georgia defensive coordinator Willie Martinez said of the Cowboys’ confidence. “They are good offensively. They have proven that with their stats. You can tell they are very confident.”
“It’s got our attention obviously. We’ll see what happens.”
Oklahoma State was second in the Big 12 in scoring (35.2 ppg) and fourth in yards (409.8 per game) last year. The Cowboys expect to be even better in offensive coordinator Larry Fedora’s third season. Fedora came from Florida, where his last group led the SEC in total offense.
“Everybody talks about balance, (Fedora) has got balance,” Georgia coach Mark Richt said. “He understands the value of being able to run and pass equally well. He’s probably better than most at understanding his talent and what they can do.”
Reid wishes the people around him in Stillwater, Okla., would shut up and not put so much pressure on the group he leads, he said.
“I have not been personally saying things like that in the public,” he said. “Those things have been out of my control. I help run this offense. I know all the hard work that was put into it.”
It’s too late to take anything back, though. Georgia’s players already are using the as a rallying cry.
“I’ve been reading that stuff,” cornerback Thomas Flowers said. “They’re a confident group. It’s a reflection of the head coach. He’s a confident guy. He has a lot of excitement, and the players feed off that. They are trying to make a name for themselves nation wide, and what better way would there be than to be against us, come in between the hedges and get a victory.”