Maybe the best quarterback in Oklahoma State history went out on a winning note as Mason Rudolph led the No. 19 Cowboys to a 30-21 win over No. 22 Virginia Tech in Camping World Bowl.
Rudolph, a senior who is headed to the NFL draft, was named Camping World Bowl MVP.
Rudolph threw for 351 yards and two touchdowns, hitting 21 of 32 attempts. Rudolph hit Dillon Stoner in the third quarter and then later connected with Biletnikoff Award winner James Washington for his two touchdown passes.
Washington, also a senior, had five catches for 126 while Marcell Ateman added five catches for 107 yards.
“It’s pretty easy when you’ve got a guy who is a gazelle out there,” Rudolph said of Washington. “He eats up all the space between the corner, he breaks him off, the guy turns his back, and it’s over. So I’ve seen that a few times throughout my career, and it’s always a good sight.”
Rudolph’s season passing yardage total is 4,904 – a school record. The old mark of 4,727 was set by Brandon Weeden in 2011. Rudolph leads the nation in passing yards this season.
Rudolph completes his career with 10 400-yard passing games and 23 300-yard passing games in his career, both school records.
With two touchdowns, Rudolph increased his school-record season total 47. The previous record of 44 was set by Barry Sanders during his 1988 Heisman season.
Washington brought his career reception total to 4,472, establishing a new OSU record and breaking the previous mark of 4,414 set by Rashaun Woods from 2000-03. It is second in Big 12 history.
Washington’ season total is 1,549 yards. That ranks third highest in OSU history. Washington now has 21 career games with at least 100 receiving yards, breaking Rashaun Woods’ school record of 20. Washington has caught a pass in 45 straight games – the second longest active streak in the nation.
Considered one of the nation’s best defensive teams, the Hokies held Oklahoma State to 76 yards and 15 points under its season average. Virginia Tech outgained Oklahoma State 518-492 yards for the game, topping its own season average by more than 100 yards thanks to a career-high 124 rushing yards from Deshawn McClease and two rushing touchdowns from quarterback Josh Jackson.
But Rudolph was masterful in directing the Cowboy offense.
“I don’t really remember Oklahoma State making very many, if any mistakes, and we made a handful, just enough to kind of keep us from pulling the thing off,” Hokies head coach Justin Fuente said. “And that’s not to say that Oklahoma State doesn’t deserve credit for winning the game. They do. They have a fine football team. They’re well coached and did a good job.”
With the win, Oklahoma State has now won 10 games in three consecutive seasons for the first time in program history.
“There are a lot of people that work hard year round for that,” Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy said. “All wins are difficult. Extremely difficult to get in double digit wins. If not, just go back over the last five years and look at traditional top 20 teams in the country that have not been able to accomplish that. So there’s a lot of credit to go around in the success that this group of young men, in what they’ve accomplished.
“And we, as a staff, are very proud of them,. We talk about being resilient.
“We talk about finding a way to accomplish and build on success, and we talk about being problem solvers. And if there’s issues, find a solution and fix it, and that’s what these guys have done. So we’re very proud.”