Previous Tulsa squads had flourished with a passing attack, but the run was the Golden Hurricane’s bread and butter in 2012.
Cody Green took over the reins of quarterback and had some bright moments, but he did not put up numbers as his predecessors did. Still, he was instrumental and contributed when needed.
Trey Watts and Je’Terian Douglass often carried the load, but when TU got near the goal line, Alex Singleton was the main go-to guy for short-yardage touchdowns.
Keyarris Garrett emerged as a receiver. Thomas Roberson and Jordan James were also contributed in that department.
They benefited from an offensive line that anchored by center Trent Dupy.
The defense had numerous forces and became of one of the top units in the nation when it came to forcing tackles for losses.
Ends Cory Dorris and Jared St. Johns, tackles Daeshon Bufford and Derrick Jackson, along with linebackers DeAundre Brown and Shawn Jackson, who didn’t play until the fourth game of the season as a result of serving a three-game suspension accounted for most of those stops.
Then there was a secondary led by Dexter McCoil, who set the school record as the career leader in interceptions. He had five on the season, bringing his career total to 18.
Three home games followed, with the first being a 45-10 romp over Tulane. However, that game is best remembered for a tragic injury to Green Wave defensive back Devin Walker. Walker had to be taken off the field by ambulance after he was injured on the last play of the first half.
Fans watched out of concern as Walker was attended to by medical personnel on the field for almost half an hour. He continues to recover to this day.
A convincing win against Nicholls State followed. Then TU pulled out its greatest comeback of the year when it trailed Fresno State 20-7 in the third quarter. The Golden Hurricane overcame two interceptions returned for TDs to dish out a 27-26 victory.
Highlighted by a 75-yard run from Douglass that set up a game-wining TD, the Hurricane had to overcome a sluggish performance against a underrated and pesky Rice team. Tulsa finished on top, 28-24.
After a week off came a loss to Arkansas, followed by the team’s most dominating performance in a 41-7 win over Houston on the Cougars’ home field. Tulsa had fierce battles with its West Division rivals in the past, but that wasn’t the case this time.
Tulsa trailed at one point in each game against the Knights. But it never gave up as it found ways to win. TU won the regular season battle, 23-21, to claim the C-USA West Division title and a spot in the title game. And in the championship, they overcame a six-point deficit to take a 33-27 overtime victory.
The 2012 Tulsa Golden Hurricane was a hard-nosed bunch that set out to accomplish its goals and they did.