It’s officially Big 12 Football time in Oklahoma as the Oklahoma State Cowboys capped of the non-conference portion of their season with a 40-21 win over the Golden Hurricane in Tulsa on Saturday.
First up for the Cowboys is a trip to Austin, Texas, to come face-to-face with Tom Herman and the Texas Longhorns.
OSU has won five straight games in Austin against the Longhorns and is the only team in college football history to have done so. Texas, however, holds a 24-9 all-time record in the series.
“From just what they’ve done this year, they’ve changed in my opinion,” Mike Gundy said. “They are throwing the ball more than they’ve ever been. Traditionally, when they came in the league a few years ago with Coach Herman, they were rushing the ball and were more of a power team. I don’t see that now. I see more of a team that is throwing the ball down the field.”
With this matchup being the 34th meeting in this series, the Cowboys have won seven of the past nine games and each of the past four. This four-game win streak is the longest for the Cowboys in this history of the series.
Texas holds tight to a 15-6 record of games held in Austin against the Pokes, but OSU has won the past five meetings being the only team in college football to have won five straight in Austin. The only other team to come close is Notre Dame who has won four straight meetings in Austin (1913, 1915, 1952, 1996).
Coach Gundy continues his artistry holding a 7-7 record against Texas during his time as head coach, while head coach of the Longhorns Tom Herman is 0-2 against the Cowboys. I think we can all take a moment and remember what happened the last time these two coaches met up.
The Cowboys took victories over Texas in Austin in 2010, 2011, 2013, 2015 and 2017 looking to make it a sixth consecutive win on the road this Saturday.
“It’s the same for big games, regular games, conference games, and non-conference games,” Gundy said. “Our approach has to be the same. With 19-23 year olds, we are trying to keep them focused on the task at hand. We try to get better every day and every week.”
The Cowboys enter this matchup at 3-0 taking wins over Oregon State, McNeese, and Tulsa, while the Longhorns enter this matchup at 2-1 with wins over Louisiana Tech (45-14) and Rice (48-13), as well as one loss to LSU (45-38).
As the first Big 12 game of the season, the Cowboys will have their challenges met against an offense like Texas who, as stated above by Gundy, has thrown the ball far more this season than previous seasons under returning quarterback Sam Ehlinger.
“Offensively, the quarterback is considerably better than he has been, in my opinion,” Gundy said. “They’ve got big, tall receivers and want to throw the ball down the field.”
Ehlinger just three games into the season is 82/112 for 956 yards and 11 touchdowns. Now in his third season with the Longhorns, he’s started in 20 of his 23 career games and is looking better than ever, according to Gundy,
“I don’t know what they are doing or what his reads are, I just know that he is much more productive than he was in the past,” Gundy said. “You hear people talk about his throwing and I don’t see any issues with his throwing. I think he throws pretty well. I see him as a better throwing quarterback.”
The Cowboys will be put to the test come Saturday as the team seeks another win in Austin to add to their historical record of five straight at Texas.
The Cowboys and Longhorns land prime time television on ABC with kickoff set for 6:30 p.m.