Zac Robinson enter's his final game in a Cowboy uniform as one of the most explosive players in Oklahoma State history. He's also entering his third straight bowl game, and his second after a nine-win season.
The Oklahoma State Cowboys have everything to prove as they walk into the new Dallas Cowboy stadium Jan 2. But they also have everything to lose.
The 2009 senior class has been one of the most influential classes in school history, and they have a shot at history. For the first time since 1988, the Cowboys have a shot at a 10-win season.
But that's not all Robinson and company are capable of doing. They can make a statement to not only the SEC but the country, that the Cowboys are truly ready to become a consistent force in college football.
Though they underachieved this season, they played to the best of their abilities after losing two of the most explosive players in the country. The loses of Dez Bryant (suspended indefinitely) and Kendall Hunter (sprained ankle) slowed one of the most dynamic offensives.
Head coach Mike Gundy had players step up and try to fill the shoes of the fallen stars. The most successful, senior running back Keith Toston.
The replacement of Bryant however, was more painful to fill. Instead of one, it was a core of solid youngsters that picked up the passing attack, however inconsistent it was.
Robinson and company enter the Cotton bowl against the Ole Miss Rebels. The Rebels play a very similar spread style like the Cowboys, led by their quarterback Jevan Snead.
The Cowboy offense knows what it has to do, the question marks will surround the defense. A defense led by three senior linebackers that has been inconsistent the whole season.
Senior linebackers Patrick Lavine, Donald Booker, and Andre Sexton lead a defense that has all the talent to be one of the best in the country, and all the youth to slow it down.
The Cowboy secondary, though extremely athletic, only has three seniors. Perrish Cox, Terrance Anderson, and Lucien Antoine have had to carry the load.
The Cowboy defense now gets to play the game looking to earn respect against the league that shows the Big 12 none, the SEC.
A win over Ole Miss is a win in the right direction for Robinson and the Cowboys. Robinson leaves on top and sets his beloved program on the right path toward complete resurgence in the Big 12 and in the BCS.
The new year has come and a new age in Oklahoma State football has a chance to begin.