Loss of J.W. Walsh Will Test Oklahoma State Cowboys' Resolve

Richard Rowe- US PRESSWIRE

Former Denton Guyer product and Oklahoma State Cowboys quarterback J.W. Walsh is reportedly out for the season following a knee injury he suffered in the team’s 31-10 victory over the Iowa State Cyclones yesterday afternoon, in which he threw for a career high 415 yards.

Walsh has looked very strong in the past few weeks after taking over for the original Cowboys’ starter this season, true freshman Wes Lunt. With the injury to Walsh, Mike Gundy will be forced to turn to little-used junior signal caller Clint Chelf who was a three-star recruit in the 2010 class out of Enid, Oklahoma.

The Cowboys had little trouble dispatching an Iowa State team yesterday that had looked strong in recent weeks, but this was behind huge performances from Walsh, all-everything running back Joseph Randle and the emerging wideout Charlie Moore.

As it stands now, the Cowboys will certainly be forced to become a run-first team in the near future as Chelf becomes accustomed to the level of Big 12 defenses which he has yet to see in important situations. An even greater onus will be placed on Randle to continue to put up huge rushing performances to keep the Cowboys running smoothly, and you can bet opposing defenses will respond by stacking the box against Oklahoma State and daring them to throw.

The next three weeks are no easy test for the Cowboys in this time of adversity as they welcome a TCU Horned Frogs team to Stillwater on Saturday fresh off a triple overtime loss to the Texas Tech Red Raiders and looking for redemption. The following two weeks see OSU travel to Manhattan to take on one of the nation’s best teams in the Kansas State Wildcats and then return back to Stillwater on November 10th to host the West Virginia Mountaineers.

Can Clint Chelf rise to the occasion, and can those around him rise even higher to take up the slack left by J.W. Walsh’s injury?

The answer to this question will likely determine how the Cowboys finish and what their lasting legacy is for the 2012 season.

Kris Hughes is the College Football Network Manager for Rant Sports and a member of the Football Writers Association of America.

You can follow him on Twitter or check out his Facebook page. Kris is also the host of the Rant Sports College Football Hour on the TSC Radio Network on Sunday evenings at 8 Central Time and Rant Sports Radio on the Blog Talk Radio Network Wednesday evenings at 8 Central Time.