No. 18 Oklahoma moved to second place in the Big 12 with a 41-13 home win over rival Oklahoma State in the latest edition of the Bedlam Series on Saturday.
Spencer Rattler needed only 24 pass attempts to amass 301 yards and four touchdowns. Wideout Theo Wease caught two of them, and Rhamondre Stevenson took care of business on the ground with 141 rushing yards.
Oklahoma jumped out to a 21-0 edge after nine minutes and led 27-13 at halftime before putting the game away with a pair of fourth-quarter touchdowns. The Sooners doubled the Cowboys' yards from scrimmage, 492-246.
OU extended its win streak to five and now sports a 6-2 overall record (5-2 Big 12). The No. 14 Cowboys fell to 5-2 overall and 4-2 in the conference with the loss to the Sooners.
Oklahoma State QB Spencer Sanders: 10-of-19, 97 passing yards, 0 TD, 1 INT
Oklahoma State RB Chuba Hubbard: 8 carries, 44 rushing yards
Oklahoma State WR Tylan Wallace: 4 catches, 68 receiving yards
Oklahoma QB Spencer Rattler: 17-of-24, 301 passing yards, 4 TD
Oklahoma RB Rhamondre Stevenson: 26 carries, 141 rushing yards
Oklahoma WR Theo Wease: 2 catches, 40 receiving yards, 2 TD
Oklahoma Overwhelms Cowboys on Both Sides of the Ball
This year's edition of the Bedlam Series looked as if it would be a competitive affair on paper between two top-20 teams searching for the Big 12 crown, but Oklahoma dominated from the jump during a contest that felt one-sided for all 60 minutes.
Oklahoma's first two drives went a combined 149 yards on just 12 plays, giving the team a 14-0 lead with 8:26 remaining in the first quarter.
The defense then came through, with David Ugwoegbu picking off a Spencer Sanders pass to set OU up at the OSU 20-yard line. The Sooners needed just four plays to go up 20-0, with Rattler finding Wease for the touchdown.
To OSU's credit, the Cowboys responded with an 11-play, 75-yard touchdown drive despite losing Sanders midway due to injury. Backup Shane Illingworth jumped in and found Logan Carter for a touchdown.
That would be Oklahoma State's only time finding paydirt, however, as the Sooners defense took care of business from there. The Cowboys never crossed the OU 20-yard line until its last drive, which ended with a turnover on downs before OU ran out the clock up 41-13.
Before that moment, Oklahoma even successfully pulled off a trick play for a touchdown, which Jeremiah Hall scored with relative ease:
By the time the game ended, Rattler had joined some fantastic company among OU football quarterback greats:
OU started this conference season on an ugly note with a pair of Big 12 losses, but the Sooners have responded with five wins by an average of 28.4 points. They look like the most dangerous team in the conference and control its their own destiny en route to a Big 12 Championship berth.
Oklahoma State's Season Sinks Into Further Despair
The Cowboys started this season 4-0 and looked well on their way to a Big 12 Championship Game berth after knocking off No. 17 Iowa State 24-21 on Oct. 24.
However, very little has gone right ever since.
Oklahoma State blew a 31-20 lead at home to Texas before falling 41-34 in overtime despite Spencer Sanders throwing for 400 yards. The Cowboys then hung on for dear life against Kansas State, 20-18 in a game they trailed 12-0.
Despite the pair of shaky performances, Oklahoma State went into Saturday's rivalry matchup in control of its own destiny to finish first in the Big 12 before season's end.
That grasp is long gone, now, as the team slipped further in the standings to the point where it now looks up at three teams.
On offense, the passing attack threw for just 4.2 yards per attempt. Shane Illingworth, who stepped in for an injured Sanders for part of the game, went just 5-of-21 in relief. The rushing attack combined for just 78 yards on 28 carries.
The defense proved to be no match for the Sooners' rushing attack, which gashed Oklahoma State for 191 yards. No Sooner receiver caught more than three passes, but it didn't matter as Rattler did pretty much whatever he wanted en route to passing for 12.5 yards per attempt.
The result was another bad loss to OU during head coach Mike Gundy's era, and Bryan Fischer of Athlon Sports pointed out the details:
Numerous analysts pointed to a coaching difference between Gundy and OU's Lincoln Riley, with Eric Bailey of Tulsa World pointing out these sequences:
Eric Bailey @EricBaileyTW
Good observation from @TRowOU on OU radio. Those last 2 possessions showed difference between Riley/Gundy Gundy is conservative, punts on 4th-and-8 from OU 39 when down 21. Meanwhile Riley goes for it on fourth-and-4 from OSU 31. And throws the ball into the end zone for TD.
The Cowboys aren't out of the Big 12 Championship race, although they need some help. The good news is that they have three regular-season games remaining, all against teams below them in the conference ledger.
However, Oklahoma State must figure out its issues quickly, as another loss would assuredly end any chances at a conference title.
Both teams play next on Nov. 28.
Oklahoma State will host Texas Tech, and Oklahoma will visit West Virginia.