OSU-Texas A&M Matchups

This is a good game to show evidence of what we are talking about when we say there is little difference between any of the schools in the Big 12, other than frontrunner Texas. If Oklahoma State and Texas A&M played on a neutral field 10 times, one team might win six of the games or it could easily go five and five.

This game will feature a test of wills. Texas A&M wants a short game with the clock never stopping and the Aggies grinding out a win before getting on the charter flight and heading home. The Cowboys want to curtail A&M's clock-hogging offense and keep the ball long enough to get the best chunk play offense West of the Mississippi in gear.

Several weeks ago when the Cowboys went to Houston they wanted to avoid a shootout-type game, and now the Cowboys offense is built to win just that kind of affair. There is one way to combat the A&M grind-it-out offense and that is through field position. If you can get the ball in a good spot then you really don't care about time of possession because you won't need as much time. Also, by getting ahead on the scoreboard the Cowboys can speed the Aggies up to play faster than they would like.

OSU Linebackers
vs. A&M running back Javorskie Lane

A&M likes to slow the game down with 275-pound tailback Javorskie Lane. If he can get five or six yards on first down and set the Aggies offense up with second- or third-down and short, A&M will stay in a comfort zone. Lane is a three yards-and-a cloud-of-dust kind of back that also serves as a battering ram to soften a defense up for complimentary speedster Michael Goodson and option operator quarterback Stephen McGee. If the Cowboys want to control the game they must keep Lane from controlling it. Tackling and gang tackling are a neccessity. Bigger linebackers like Rodrick Johnson, Marcus Brown and Alex Odiari must take the lead. They must be brave because they have to be to get in front of Lane. He will punish you, but if you put him on the ground for short gains it will be a good hurt. Bruises go away, a loss is forever.
Edge: A&M

OSU Wide Receivers
vs. A&M Secondary

Watching the OSU-KU video will obviously get the attention of a young Texas A&M secondary. Two aspects of this matchup are very interesting. How much will A&M be able to double up and press the 300-yard man Adarius Bowman. The answer would appear to be not much. Bowman primarily lines up in the slot and with OSU running some option the Aggies could leave themselves wide open to be gashed by the option. It is hard to jam Bwoman because in the slot he is lined up off the ball giving him wiggle room to get off into his route. The other aspect is if Bowman doesn't burn you and you do slow him down there is D'Juan Woods, Brandon Pettigrew, Ricky Price and Anthony Parks, and the OSU running game.
Edge: OSU

OSU's Matt Fodge
vs. A&M's Justin Brantly

The two best punters in the Big 12 and the nation square off. We already mentioned field position is a major factor for the game. This very simply comes down to who boots the ball best. Fodge is also pretty adept at pinning teams deep. A&M uses the same spread punt formation that Oklahoma State used last season. A block is a possibility.
Edge: Slight to OSU

OSU's Perrish Cox
vs. A&M's Kerry Franks

Again, we are dealing with field position. Both teams will score points in our estimation and that gives this duo a chance to do their thing. Cox is money on kickoff returns, but slightly dangerous on punt returns. Franks only returns kicks and Chad Schroeder has the punt return chore for A&M. We think Cox is the better returner, but A&M has been better the past couple of games on kickoff coverage than the Cowboys.
Edge: Slight to A&M

Prediction
Lane will have some success because the Cowboys just aren't all that on defense yet. He won't have the amount of success he needs. OSU quarterback Bobby Reid, and the Cowboy offense, is so confident right now that they won't be stopped except when Lane is on the field pounding. Also, expect the Cowboys to flex their offense in the first half and not wait until after halftime this week. The A&M defense just hasn't seen an offense with this many weapons. The home crowd will be a major factor. After five weeks without a home game and with the Cowboys delivering a much needed win to prove to their fans they are moving the right direction it will be crazy. It might be the best home crowd atmosphere in school history because of the combination of events, long time away from home, record performance in a win a week ago, and homecoming. This is not a good situation for the Aggies to walk in on.
Oklahoma State, 31, Texas A&M 21

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