First, defensive coaches are starting to get desperate in an effort to slow down the Colt McCoy train. Kid's dealing right now and opposing teams know it. For proof, look no further than the Cosby TD. In a 3 man front look, the Cowboys decide to bring all four linebackers on a blitz while dropping the 3 down linemen into shallow zones. Nothing too exotic about that. For Dick Lebeau, that's Andy Griffin Show vanilla.
But the secondary's got some 'splainin' to do Lucy. Corners are manned up with the strong safety lined up over Shipley in the slot. At the snap, the nose tackle drops into coverage underneath Shipley with an over the top safety, which is designed to dupe Colt into thinking the Cowboys are in a bracket look. Given the windows Colt has been throwing to all year, a dropping DT with an over the top safety must look like the Atlantic Ocean to McCoy as far as windows go. But wait, the Free Safety is a "robber" on the play and jumps in front of Shipley for what would have been an easy pick. Instead, Colt elects to hit Cosby on the fade for an easy score. The OSU defensive staff was doing everything in its power to take Shipley and the middle of the field away from Colt with what amounts to multiple layers of deception. And instead, it gave up an easy six.
Not just a pretty face.
Defensively, with 6 and a half minutes left in the first quarter, the Horns really dodged a bullet. On third and ten out of a 4 wide look, the Cowboys ran a little slip screen to Bryant from the boundary side, that would have probably gone to the House had it not been poorly thrown. Texas' DT's and DE's had sold out to get to Robinson, Bobino had vacated the middle of the field to chase the running back to the field side flat, and Texas' corners were giving a large cushion. And make no mistake about it, Gundy filed it away for a rainy day. Fast forward to fourth and 6 with 2 plus minutes to go, and the game on the line, same formation, same personnel, same side of the field. Except this time, Lamarr Houston doesn't rush but instead stays on the line of scrimmage, Curtis Brown is in press coverage on Bryant and comes underneath the screen, and Blake Gideon is balls to the wall all over Bryant as soon as the wideout makes the catch. No less than 3 players could have made the defensive play of the game. It wasn't dumb luck or a lucky call. Guess who else filed away that first quarter play for a rainy day.