The Oklahoma State Cowboys are knocking on the door of history when they visit Austin, Texas on Saturday. Only one other team has equaled OSU’s current four-game winning streak at Texas. Notre Dame won four in a row (1913, 1915, 1952 and 1996) before losing the season opener last year.
Now the Cowboys, 5-1, 2-1, can make it five in a row with a win on Saturday in what is basically a Big 12 elimination game.
Kickoff: 11:00 AM (CST)
Location: Darrell K. Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium – Austin, TX
Odds: Oklahoma -7.0
- Mason Rudolph has thrown for 2,368 yards and 19 touchdowns.
- Justice Hill has rushed for 633 yards and 5 touchdowns.
- James Washington has 882 receiving yards and 6 touchdowns.
- Sam Ehlinger is both the Longhorns leading passer (1,178 yards) and rusher (275 yards). He’s scored a combined 7 touchdowns.
- Collin Johnson has 511 receiving yards and a touchdowns.
Oklahoma State’s Top Playmaker
Washington is the top target for Mason Rudolph because he could legitimately be the most explosive receiver in the country. He’s averaging 25.9 yards per reception and has a season long of 86 yards.
Texas’ Top Playmaker
Ehlinger is the key that makes the Texas offense work. His struggles a bit with accuracy (54.5% completion rate) but the plays that he makes with his legs are what can change a game. Averaging 4.0 yards per carry, Ehlinger uses all of his massive 6-2/230 frame to punish defenses.
Oklahoma State’s Difference Maker
Justice Hill brings balance to the OSU offense and keeps defenses from dropping too many back in coverage. Hill’s yards are coming at a clip of 105.5 yards per game and 6.0 yards per carry.
Texas’ Difference Maker
The Longhorns have to stretch the field in order to keep pace in the Big 12 and Collin Johnson is the best option to make that happen. Averaging 18.9 yards per reception, Johnson is the most explosive deep threat in the arsenal.
The Weakness of the Cowboys
The offensive line has been a point of contention for OSU for much of the season. Even in early games against Tulsa and South Alabama Rudolph was pressured at an uncomfortable level. The loss of right guard Larry Williams doesn’t help with things as well.
The Weakness of the Longhorns
The Longhorns have had their own struggles along the offensive line as well. There may not be a team more hindered by injury on the line than Texas. The U.T. offensive line is a week-by-week triage unit.
Oklahoma State secondary vs. the Texas passing attack
The Texas passing attack is anemic but they are in the bottom half of the league at 288.3 yards per game. Oklahoma State leads the conference in pass defense, allowing 222.7 yards per game. The Pokes have allowed just four touchdowns through the air while snagging seven interceptions. Opposing quarterbacks are completing 56.1% of their passes against Oklahoma State. Advantage: Oklahoma State
Oklahoma State front seven vs. the Texas run game
Oklahoma State is giving up nearly 150 yards per game on the ground at a pace of 3.7 yards per carry. Texas is averaging about twenty yards more per game on the ground and 4.0 yards per carry. Advantage: Even
Texas secondary vs. the Oklahoma State passing attack
Mason Rudolph and company are lighting up the Big 12 with a passing attack that is producing 411.2 yards and a 65.4% completion rate per game. The Cowboys have thrown 19 touchdowns to 5 picks on the season. The Longhorns have snagged a conference best 9 interceptions this season but have also given up 10 touchdowns through the air. The only teams in the conference allowing more yards per game through the air than Texas’ 264.8 are Baylor, Kansas, and Texas Tech. Advantage: Oklahoma State
Texas front seven vs. the Oklahoma State rushing attack
Texas is second in the conference in rushing yards allowed per game at 116.7. Opposing backs are averaging 3.6 yards per carry and have scored seven rushing touchdowns. The Pokes come in to Austin tied with TCU with an league best 199.5 yards per game on the ground. They are also tied with Oklahoma for a league best 5.4 yards per carry.
Elimination On The Line
With both teams entering the game at an equal 2-1 mark in conference play a second loss is most likely going to eliminate one of the two from the conference championship game.