Taking flight, Cowboys give Air Raid test run

Published 8:00 am Sunday, August 14, 2022

By Jim Gazzolo

Special to the American Press

On a day of first impressions, the Cowboys showed both promise and a need for more work to be done.

It’s likely first-year head coach Gary Goff and his staff are happy with both those facts.

Playing their first scrimmage of camp three weeks ahead of the season opener on Sept. 3 at Montana State, McNeese State displayed moments that impressed on Saturday morning, and at other times were out of sync.

“I didn’t like the self-inflicted wounds like the false starts, the misalignment, but I kind of expected it,” Goff said. “We have to cut out the simple mistakes.”

But the early miscues were gone after a bit and the play improved, especially that of quarterback Cam Ransom.

Getting his first extended work after suffering through a tight back, Ransom missed his first three pass attempts. Then he got hot.

The lefty transfer hit on nine of his last 11 passes for 217 yards and four touchdowns.

“It was good to see him out there,” Goff said of Ransom. “We are still being careful with him. He made some mistakes early on but he threw some really good balls.”

Walker Wood had his moments as well, hitting on 6 of 13 passes for 99 yards and a score. He also threw the lone interception.

Wood started by finding Mason Pierce on a 65-yard pass and run play on the opening drive. It was the first of seven touchdowns.

The defense had its moments with eight sacks and a Grayson Mays interception. Returning starters Mason Kinsey and Joey McNeely each had a pair of sacks.

“We made some plays but we came out a little flat,” said linebacker Kordell Williams. “We have to be better with our energy.”

Williams said this year’s defense will be better than last season.

“We have an actual scheme this year,” Williams said. “It will be fun when we get going.”

Most eyes were on Ransom, who hit four receivers for scores that went for 35, 29, 20 and 25 yards.

Pierce was the big weapon, grabbing five balls for 139 yards and a pair of scores. Koby Duru had a pair of catches for 63 yards and a score.

Nine Cowboys caught passes with Jon McCall and Severyn Foster reaching the end zone.

The run game was led by Josh Parker’s six carries for 29 yards. D’Angelo Durham and Deonte McMahon each ran for a score as McNeese added 95 yards on 16 carries.

McNeese will play its second of three scrimmages at 7 p.m. Friday in Cowboy Stadium.