More than a handful of teams are already being thrown around as possible national title contenders. Surprisingly, it’s a list that doesn’t include Bob Stoops and his No. 5 Oklahoma Sooners.
It’s unfamiliar territory for a team that was recently voted the No. 1 program during the BCS era.
While the rest of the nation, including ESPN’s College GameDay, will be focused on the matchup between No. 4 Florida State and No. 10 Clemson, Stoops will be left with the task of motivating a group of players who’ve looked quite lackluster thus far.
However, if the No. 13 Kansas State Wildcats coming into town isn’t enough to get the Sooners fired up, the constant criticism they’ve heard from the local media during their bye week should be more than enough to get the job done.
The Sooners came into the season with high hopes of bringing an eighth national title back to Norman. However, a depleted offensive line and a questionable run defense have planted a seed of doubt in the minds of many.
But Stoops knows that Saturday’s prime-time showdown presents the perfect opportunity to change all that.
The Sooners have won five straight against the Wildcats going back to 2003. That includes a trip to Manhattan last season for a dominant 58-17 victory over a 7-0 No. 8 Wildcats team.
However, when it comes down to conference rivalries, the past hardly matters.
Here are seven things the Sooners must do in order to come away with a victory on Saturday.