Oklahoma State quarterback Mason Rudolph makes his job look easy at times. It’s made easier when he has a pair of targets like James Washington and Marcell Ateman.
Washington and Ateman are the first receiving duo in Big 12 history to each eclipse 100 yards in four consecutive games. They’re the first pair to do it for an FBS program since 1996.
Most consider Washington the best receiver in the country. He’s second in the FBS in both receiving yards and yards per catch. Ateman has managed to bounce back strongly after a missed season in 2016. ESPN considers him the Cowboys’ “X-factor” for the second half of the season. He supplies Rudolph a secondary option when opponents double-cover Washington.
The Cowboys carry confidence into their matchup with Texas on Saturday, and Washington and Ateman are a huge reason. Few, if any, teams in the country have one, let alone two, receivers of their caliber. Factor in a talented quarterback like Rudolph, and it’s understandable why Oklahoma State’s offense has been, for the most part, unstoppable in 2017.
Although the Texas defense is stout, it’s hard to imagine it will hold both Washington and Ateman below 100 yards. At least one of them should pass the mark, but if they both manage to do so, it would further extend their hold on the Big 12 record.
The Cowboys are out for a victory. Washington and Ateman are out for that and history.