We’ve got a long time before the Sooners and the Cowboys play, so that means plenty of time to start guessing how this college football season will end up.
A few things to consider while picking over your Thanksgiving leftovers …
Believe Mike Gundy when he says the Cowboys only have one loss
He’s fighting the good fight here, people. Trying his best to convince any and all the referees, not his players or his lack of knowledge of the rules, were to blame. Oh, coach. If only it were that simple.
Fact is, Oklahoma State was in a situation where – win or lose – a game against a MAC team was in the balance in the last minute. That’s not a good look. Neither is a loss to Baylor, for that matter. Gundy is doing everything he can to distance himself from that loss to Central Michigan. He believes it was a win and Gundy wants the committee to feel the same way because Gundy knows a one-loss Oklahoma State team with a win at Oklahoma would be playoff worthy. It’s hard to get in the playoff, so Gundy wants to make sure he’s doing everything in his power.
Don’t believe Bob Stoops when he says the same thing
Gundy might be fighting the good fight and promoting his team, but Bob Stoops isn’t doing that. He’s being totally self-serving. Not that anyone should blame him, either. Stoops needs OSU to look as good as possible and a loss against a MAC team doesn’t help Oklahoma in any way.
So, sure Stoops is going to talk OSU up. But don’t believe it when Stoops says OSU has one loss. Stoops doesn’t honestly care. If he wasn’t playing the Cowboys this week, he would distance from any talk about OSU. Believe that.
Don’t believe the College Football Committee when they say a conference championship matters
Last year, OU blasted Oklahoma State in its final game and dropped a spot in the playoff, going from No. 3 to No. 4. That doesn’t exactly prove a conference champion matters. In addition, say Ohio State loses to Michigan and doesn’t win the Big 10. It would be hard to give the Sooners the edge over a Ohio State team that won against the Sooners in Norman.
What matters is how the committee is feeling at a particular time. Conference titles matter, but who knows how much? There’s no criteria or formula here, so it’s near impossible to figure out exactly how much any one thing is considered. Essentially, it’s a safe bet to not believe much of what the committee says when defending its rankings. It’ll make your life easier, too. Just consider freeing yourself from the conversation.
Don’t believe Bob Stoops when he says he needs the bye week
OU has some injuries, so, yes, some time off is good, but Oklahoma would be really good to play as often as possible and in front of as many eyes as possible. This isn’t the best time to be taking a holiday.
OU needs to be visible, seen and heard and part of a weekend where there could be some chaos. Another year, where OU is among the top four, and maybe it would be better for the Sooners to have a bye week, but this isn’t the year.
Don’t believe it when you hear Oklahoma has a chance at the playoff
OU’s path is still blocked, for sure. OU does need help. The Sooners need Ohio State to lose and that doesn’t seem likely, particularly this week against Michigan. Meanwhile, a Washington State win over Washington and a Clemson loss to Virginia Tech (maybe) or South Carolina. But none of that ultimately matters. There are too many teams in front of the Sooners.
More importantly, every team ranked ahead of Oklahoma has a quality non-conference win. Every one of them. OU doesn’t. Now the Sooners had their chance with games against Houston and Ohio State, but Oklahoma flubbed those opportunities. Meanwhile, Washington, Wisconsin, etc. all have a schedule that shows itself as more meaningful. The loss to Houston doesn’t look as bad as it did earlier this season, but a loss to Houston doesn’t particularly help OU’s case, either.
Do believe the Sugar Bowl would be a worthy prize for both OU and OSU
An 0-2 showing against Houston and Ohio State for the Sooners? A loss to Central Michigan for OSU? Consider both massive failures, so it seems out of the question either could finish their season on New Year’s in New Orleans.
Ask any Cowboy fan, they’d tell you that’s an amazing turnaround. Ask any Sooner fan after what happened in this non-conference schedule and a Sugar Bowl showing would have sounded good.
Also, consider the fact the opponent for OU and OSU will be a beatable SEC team – like Tennessee. That’s an appetizing thought. You know, wrap up the season with some momentum and a win against an SEC team. Nothing wrong with that at all.