The sixth-ranked Cowboys, 12-1, will open Big 12 play against Kansas State on Saturday without Cobbins, who started all 13 games this season.
Cobbins was averaging 4.7 points and 4.6 rebounds in helping the Cowboys climb to No. 6 in this week's Associated Press Top 25, the highest ranking by an OSU basketball team since 2005. He led the team with 19 blocked shots, and his 111 career blocks is seventh in school history.
Sophomore Kamari Murphy is expected to replace Cobbins in the starting lineup, but Ford said Monday night following the game that the entire team would need to step up in the post player's absence.
"Any time you lose any player possibly it puts a little bit of a dent in your team. But it also gives other players an opportunity. On our team he's our starting center but it's going to give Stevie Clark an opportunity. Phil Forte an opportunity. Why? Because we'll probably have to move Le'Bryan Nash to the five spot (center), Marcus Smart some to the four spot, and those other guys are going to have to step up," Ford said.
"Gary Gaskins is going to have to step up because he can physically play in the Big 12, we've just got to get him to understand everything that's going on on the scouting report and things like that. If Mike's not able to go, everybody's going to have to chip in because Mike was a very important part of this basketball team when it came to blocking shots and rebounding and understanding every single thing that I wanted. We'll ask the whole team to chip in.
"You can hold your head down and be sad for Michael but not for our basketball team."