The Oklahoma State Cowboys have a bye week this week. So, instead of breaking down an upcoming matchup, I will be giving you my predictions for each of the Cowboys’ remaining Big 12 games.
Mike Gundy’s team has shown itself to be talented during its first four games, but it has also shown itself to be inconsistent. That type of inconsistency makes it extremely hard to predict how the rest of the team's schedule will pan out.
The Cowboys have been stellar on offense, despite losing the talented tandem of Justin Blackmon and Brandon Weeden from last season. However, the defense has struggled to stop the better teams on the schedule, despite seeming to have the necessary talent. Picking these games will not be easy, but we will push on.
The Kansas Jayhawks have looked better under new head coach Charlie Weis. Dayne Crist is a significant improvement at quarterback, and the team looks sharper overall.
However, that does not mean they have playmakers, which is really what it takes to win in the Big 12. This team has lost three straight games, including close losses to teams like Rice and Northern Illinois.
The Jayhawks will likely lose their fourth game in a row to Kansas State this weekend, and Oklahoma State will make it a fifth.
This will be a huge revenge game for the Cowboys, who lost a close game to the Cyclones last season in Ames that destroyed any hopes they had of competing for a national championship. Needless to say, the team and fanbase will be pumped for this game.
The Cowboys are more talented than the Cyclones, but that does not mean the game will be easy. Paul Rhoads has people believing in his team, including his team itself. However, the Cowboys will still come out on top.
The TCU Horned Frogs are a team that could give the Cowboys some problems. They have major talent on their defensive front, which is one of the best ingredients to use to disrupt a potent passing attack like the Cowboys have.
However, TCU has been untested thus far this season. Their lone Big 12 game was a win over the worst team in the conference, Kansas, and it was only a 14-point win. The TCU defensive front is good, but the Cowboy running attack will help keep it at bay.
It also doesn’t help the Frogs that they have to face Oklahoma State in Stillwater. Cowboys win.
Kansas State proved just how good it was by walking into Norman and beating an Oklahoma team that never loses at home. To start off the month of November, the Cowboys will have to face the Wildcats in Manhattan, Kansas.
While this game will not be as lopsided as it might seem, considering how Kansas State is ranked No. 7 nationally right now, it will be very difficult for the Cowboys to win. They narrowly beat the Wildcats at home last season, and this year they will have to try to beat the exact same team on the road without many of the playmakers they had last season.
Wildcats win by a touchdown.
The West Virginia Mountaineers are making a name for themselves in the Big 12 conference. Former Oklahoma State offensive coordinator Dana Holgorsen knows how to put points on the board, and he has an experienced quarterback behind center to do it.
Oklahoma State will have no problem scoring on West Virginia, and the Cowboys really might win the game, especially at home. However, they will also be unable to stop the Mountaineers. In such a situation, the more experienced quarterback usually wins.
Therefore, this one goes to Geno Smith and West Virginia in a close, high-scoring game.
Tommy Tuberville has finally introduced some defense down in Lubbock. The Red Raiders still use the high-octane, Mike Leach offense and look even better now with an improved defense. Their game against Oklahoma this weekend will be a major measuring stick in how good they have become.
The Cowboys dominated the Red Raiders in Lubbock last season to the tune of 66-6, and although this year’s matchup will not be as easy, it will be a Cowboy win. Superior athleticism and talent combined with a home atmosphere will be the reason why.
The Cowboys dismantled the Sooners in Stillwater last season, 44-10—one of the biggest routs in the history of the Bedlam matchup. This season, the game will be played in Norman, which will probably yield a very different outcome.
While this game does not seem as sure for the Sooners as it did before the season thanks to their erratic play, it will be a Sooner win. Oklahoma rarely loses at home, and since it already did once this season, the team is extremely unlikely to do so again.
The Cowboys end the season with a road matchup against the Baylor Bears. This game has all the makings of a track meet, and that is exactly what it will be. Baylor has a talented offense led by Nick Florence, who, although he is no Robert Griffin, has proved that he is a talented quarterback in his own right.
Oklahoma State has more athletes, especially on defense. Getting even one stop in this game could be the deciding factor. As poor as the Cowboy defense has played at times this season, they are still a lot better than Baylor’s defense. The Cowboys win this game. Bet the over.
So that wraps up my predictions. If I am correct, the Cowboys will post a record of 7-5 in 2012, which is a bit disappointing considering the expectations.
However, it is extremely encouraging when one considers that, five or six years ago, a rebuilding year meant a three or four-win season. Still, the Cowboys could surprise yet, by upsetting some of the bigger boys in the conference down the road.