He was only in Stillwater for one season, but that’s all it took for many fans and media to associate Oklahoma State’s offense with current West Virginia head coach Dana Holgorsen.
Bruce says OSU's offense is similar to West Virginia's - but so is everyone else's.
And maybe they should. The year before Holgorsen arrived from Houston, the Cowboys were ranked 99th in the country in passing offense and 70th in total offense. In Year One under the Mountaineers current lead man, that jumped to No. 2 and No. 3, respectively, and has stayed in the top five since then.
In fact, the rankings aren’t the only things staying the same; Holgorsen sees very little difference from the offense he installed in 2010.
“It hasn’t changed much at all,” Holgorsen said Tuesday. “It’s the same offense. If you look at it very closely, it’s called the same and a lot of the routes are the same. There’s always going to be tweaks here, tweaks there, an added formation, a different run play, a different pass play or a different set.”
Linebacker Shaq Petteway, who received his most playing time of the year last week, agrees with his coach and thinks his knowledge of the system will help.
“It is similar to our offense,” he said. “We know some of the things they are going to do, and at the same time, they are going to do some things that will exploit us. Having coaches that have been there before and know what they are going to do in key situations will help us out.”
Fellow linebacker Isaiah Bruce agrees about the similarities, but doesn’t thing this week is anything special.
“It is pretty similar,” said Bruce. “Everybody usually does the same exact thing, just different formations and different kind of speeds. It is the same thing every week.”
That’s something head coach Dana Holgorsen has been preaching since Day One, noting that the similarities will continue in the weeks ahead – that it’s not just Oklahoma State.
“It goes back to the scheming aspect of things – you’re not going to out-scheme many people,” said Holgorsen. “The next week when we play (Oklahoma), we’re going to be looking at an offense that is very similar to ours as well. That just exists in this league.”