OSU-Texas Tech: Game Day

LUBBOCK, Texas – The 23rd-ranked Oklahoma State Cowboys arrived in Lubbock on Friday for today's Big 12 regular season finale at SBC Jones Stadium against the unranked Texas Tech Red Raiders. The windy conditions, gusts up to 30-35 mph, caused a bumpy approach, but those same winds could be in the Cowboys favor when the game kicks off at 2:37 p.m. in a national cable telecast on Fox Sports Net.

The biggest chore for the Cowboys will be curtailing the spread passing offense of the Red Raiders and the nation's leading passer in Sonny Cumbie. Tech is averaging 399.5 yards a game passing and the Cowboys defense has yielded an average of 219.9 yards per game passing.

The Cowboys will have the services of tailback Vernand Morency. Morency, who is the eighth leading rusher in the nation averaging 149.6 yards per game, was held out of the 49-21 win over Baylor two weeks ago to allow him to heal a variety of nagging injuries. This week Morency declared himself as healthy as he has been since the opener against UCLA.

As far as the rest of the squad, the only injured player who would have a chance to play that won't is cornerback Darrent Williams, who did not make the trip with the team. Defensive end Victor DeGrate (ankle), defensive end Jerry Don Bray (infected knee), weak safety Jeremy Nethon (ankle) and offensive guard David Koenig (back) are all ready to go.

Fullback Julius Crosslin, weak safety Jamie Thompson, strong safety Vernon Grant and cornerback Daniel McLemore are all 100 percent after suffering minor injuries against Baylor.

Upon arrival in Lubbock, the Cowboys players and coaches kept close tabs on the shootout in Austin between Texas and Texas A&M. The win by Texas means that the winner of today's game should go to the Mastercard Alamo Bowl in San Antonio, with the loser heading to the Independence Bowl in Shreveport, La.

That alone should serve as motivation, but OSU head coach Les Miles has driven home the thought of winning eight games in the regular season as all the incentive the Cowboys need to play and win.

After the arrival at the team hotel, the Cowboys bussed to the stadium for a 35-minute walk through. After dinner and a chapel service, the squad went to their rooms for a movie on the hotel system and then an early lights out. It was an all business attitude for the 70-member travel squad.

Texas Tech is listed as a 4 1/2-point favorite.

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