First, of course, OSU must roll over ULL, but conference play is right around the corner. The Cowboys are their own enemies, for a conference title isn't too far of a stretch.
Despite an early loss to
State stands a legitimate chance of
taking the Big 12.
The downside to this chance is that
it exists due to the possibility that the quality of teams in the conference
could be dwindling. While that isn't definite, recent occurrences bring that
possibility to light.
First stop on the trip,
OU, easily, is the best team in the
conference at this point. The Sooners have posted convincing wins over UCLA,
They have a suffocating defense, a
strong offense led by quarterback Jason White and an impressive special teams.
Does the name Antonio Perkins ring a bell?
From there, things level out, and
Nebraska is ranked No. 15
at 3-0. This speaks leaps and bounds of OSU, the Cornhuskers only ranked
opponent. It's hard to believe that only one year after a 7-7 season, wins over
a struggling Penn
State and OSU would be enough to
climb the AP Poll ladder.
Not to mention the near
impossibility that the ‘Huskers are back to championship form. Definitely not dominant.
State, without Ell Roberson, proved
to be completely vulnerable against
Marshall. When Roberson returns,
they will be a different team, but the Wildcats have never been
Texas looked solid this
year, until Arkansas literally
man-handled them in Austin. Now the
Longhorns' toughness and physical play is under scrutiny.
Missouri is a ranked team,
but why? This is the most baffling school of them all. Since when did a
one-point victory over Middle
State get a team
They have played no one, except
Illinois. But the Fighting Illini
are 1-3. The Tigers are definitely overrated.
Colorado forgot how to play
defense. Simple as that. They have allowed 47 points in each of their past two
games. Granted they may make another amazing run, but at this point they aren't
Texas A&M is feeling its way
through a season with a new head coach. Yet the Aggies are a much more
legitimate contender than Missouri
State isn't much without Seneca Wallace. They have to face a surprisingly ranked Northern Illinois team this week, and it is doubtful the Cyclones will
Texas Tech could be a contender if
they did two things: learned how to play defense, and could actually score an
average of one touchdown per 100 yards.
How do you put up more than 600
yards of offense and only score 21 points?
Kansas and Baylor conclude
this tour. The bottom-feeders of the Big 12 are off to surprisingly good
Baylor is 2-2. Even if they had
played DeVry, University of
Phoenix, ITT Technical Institute and
Center, a .500 record is good for the
Bears. However, they will never be Big 12 contenders.
Kansas is 3-1 this season,
and quarterback Bill Whittemore could surprise a few people this year. They are
not going to hunt down a Big 12 title this year, but they might upset
This is why
State has a chance.
The Cowboys have a solid team, and
they won't have to contend with as many dominant powerhouses as in the
At this point, the Nov. 1 showdown
with OU could decide the Big 12 South. That may be premature, but at this point
it is a distinct possibility.
Upsets and close shaves have several
Big 12 teams down on their luck. And for OSU, the teams that have
fallen have given the Cowboys weaknesses to exploit. OSU's weaknesses have yet to be
seen. The loss to Nebraska can be
chalked to off-season rust, and the rest of its schedule has been loaded with
the empty calories of cream puffs.
They could take the conference
simply by not showing too many secrets or weaknesses too early.
Along with the work he does for GoPokes.com and
the O-State Sports Report, Matt Palmer is also the OSU football beat writer
for the Enid News and Eagle. You can reach Matt at firstname.lastname@example.org