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Clinic Talk: How Oklahoma State beat West Virginia

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What the Canes can learn from the Cowboys victory

Pittsburgh v Miami Photo by Rob Foldy/Getty Images

Our beloved Miami Hurricanes take on the West Virginia Mountaineers in the Russell Athletic Bowl, but here we’re taking a look at WVU versus Oklahoma State, where the Cowboys defeated the Mountaineers 37-20.

Below, WVU is in a 2-back 20 personnel set. They use play-action to freeze the linebackers (just watch them bite) and a hitch and go gets the single receiver wide open on the fade. It’s a 7-man protection scheme that gives the QB time. I think Elder needs to have a stellar game to keep these single side receivers under control.

However as you can see in this 2nd GIF, even with the 6 man scheme and play-action, the right guard gets worked and gives up an interior rush leading to a fumble. Miami has the defensive line to provide that kind of pressure with Thomas and Jackson.

Miami likes to take advantage of turnovers and West Virginia seems a bit turnover prone in their two losses with 4 to the Sooners and a 0:3 ratio here against State. Carter needs to play sound football and not only go for the big shot against WVU.

In this GIF, you can see OK State with a 3-man rush and dropping 8. WVU throws into triple coverage for another turnover.

Something to look out for though is this QB power/bubble RPO. It’s a nice play for +20 and the QB follows both the back side guard and h-back through the hole while bouncing off a few arm tackles.


The Cowboys throw a hard slant on this IZ RPO. There’s no flat defender so it’s an easy throw.

So the Cowboys are reading the flat defender here and as he bites down to the run he pulls and throws the bubble.

Play-action fade works in the back of the endzone.

From looking at what works and what doesn’t, I think Miami can run their play-action game and hit some deep fades to Coley. We’ll also see some RPO game as the 3-3-5 defense WVU plays seems to leave the bubble alone. I think we already know why inside zone will or won’t work based on the season so far.

On Defense, Miami needs to get pressure from the front 4 without blitzing and drop 7 into coverage to take advantage of the turnover issues the Mountaineers have shown in big games.

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