When the Oklahoma State Cowboys face the TCU Horned Frogs this week in Big 12 conference play, it will not only be the first time these two programs have faced off as conference foes, it will also be the first time they have played—period—since the 1993 season.
This first matchup is a fitting one to start the conference series, as it is very important for both teams.
Few Big 12 teams are in closer proximity than TCU and Oklahoma State. They compete in recruiting on an annual basis, so it is only fitting that they should now compete annually on the football field. TCU head coach Gary Patterson has done a great job of building a previously-bad program into a great one, just as Mike Gundy has done at Oklahoma State.
As you can see, these two schools are very similar, and their seasons this year have followed suit. Both teams have suffered at the quarterback position, losing their starters for long stretches of the season. Both have also suffered multiple, heart-breaking losses to good opponents.
This game could be the start of an exciting new rivalry, which would be great. Either way, the Cowboys need to make sure they start out that rivalry on the right foot with a big win. There are some important things they can focus on to make sure that happens.