Key Matchups and Predictions: OSU vs. ISU

Friday night in the Big Town, Ames, Iowa, and the Cowboys are sitting there needing one win to get to a week off with an 11-0 record and a Bedlam showdown with Oklahoma on the horizon.

This is very simple, the Cowboys are the better team at nearly every position, but you can't neglect Iowa State because they are talented and they are "blue collar" in attitude and will play very hard.

OSU Defensive Ends Richetti Jones and Jamie Blatnick vs. Iowa State Left Tackle Kelechi Osemele

Great matchup as Jones and Blatnick are having good seasons, both could be under consideration for some sort of All-Big 12 honors. Osemele, who has had an injury riddled year, is a future NFL left tackle. He is very athletic for 6-foot-6 and 347 pounds. This should be fun to watch.

Advantage: Too Close to Call

OSU Wide Receiver Justin Blackmon vs. Iowa State Cornerback Leonard Johnson

Johnson is talented, but Blackmon is the supreme challenge. You know, Iowa State has produced some good defensive back talent for the NFL. Ellis Hobbs comes to mind with the Patriots. This will be Johnson's resume' for the league if he can make plays against Blackmon, few have. Blackmon is on a late season tear and working his way toward honors as well as a shot at the national championship.

Advantage: Big Edge to Blackmon

OSU Running Backs Joseph Randle and Jeremy Smith vs. Iowa State Linebacker Jake Knott

Cowboy backs are talented, run hard, and get great blocking from the offensive line. Knott is the epitome of that "blue collar" and hard-working attitude. He has 80 tackles at this point, good for second in the Big 12. Again, this should be a good battle to watch.

Advantage: Too Close to Call

Prediction:

This one is simple. The Cowboys have a big athletic edge and skill edge. Iowa State will play hard — very hard. If you let the Cyclones hang around, get a fast start, or gain confidence during the course of the contest then you could be in for a longer night and a bigger battle than you could get away with. For Iowa State the intangibles are the big stage provided by the No. 2-ranked Cowboys and prime time on ESPN. It is also Senior Night. Just take care of your business and you will be fine. Slip a little and get ready for a war.

Final Score:

#2 Oklahoma State 45 @Iowa State 9

Big 12 Predictions

This Week

@Texas A&M 41, Kansas 16

@Missouri 34, Texas Tech 14

#16 Kansas State 27 @Texas 21

#5 Oklahoma 35 @Baylor 20

Season Record

Straight Up: 48-15

Against the Spread: 33-22

Not all games have point spreads as games versus FCS opponents do not.

Last Week

Straight Up: 3-1

Against the Spread: 2-2

#2 Oklahoma State 41 @Texas Tech 21

#21 Texas 34 @Missouri 20

Baylor 48, Kansas 31

@#17 Kansas State 26, Texas A&M 24


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