To understand the ins and outs of the Oklahoma State-Oklahoma rivalry, one starts with the nickname for the series.
It’s been a huge game for residents of the state for generations, even as it’s also been a lopsided one. Sooner fans are quick to point out their team’s 86-18-7 lead in the series against their neighbors from 65 miles to the northeast. From 1967 to 1994, OSU won once and had one tie.
Recent years have seen the games in the series get a lot more competitive, as Mike Gundy has coached Oklahoma State to its most sustained success in program history.
But competitive games have not translated to a change in fortune. Gundy’s teams have a 2-10 record against the Sooners since he took over as head coach in 2005. On several occasions, including perhaps last year, the Cowboys looked like they had a team capable of taking down the Sooners but didn’t. This appears to be another of those years, as the home-standing Pokes are 3-point favorites this week. Both teams have star power on offense and defenses that have looked good at times and poor at times.
A possible turning point? Special teams. The Cowboys have been an absolute mess in the kicking game, while the Sooners’ Austin Seibert, who handles all three phases of kicking, has had his moments but mostly been solid.
The Sooners, Cowboys, TCU and upstart Iowa State all sit tied at 4-1 in conference play. That turns this almost into an elimination game for these two squads in hoping for a Big 12 title, and just adds even more to the stakes of Oklahoma’s biggest annual college football game.
Here’s a trip around the Big 12 this week.