GLENDALE, AZ - JANUARY 02: Markelle Martin #10 of the Oklahoma State Cowboys celebrates after he recovered a fumble by Stanford Cardinal in the third quarter during the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl on January 2, 2012 at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images)
I understand...a little...and I get it...to a certain point. The 2011 football season was magical for Oklahoma State. They ended an eight-year losing streak to Oklahoma, won their first ever Big XII championship, made their first ever BCS bowl appearance and won said bowl game. For their efforts they efforts they deserve a pat on the back and a big congratulations, and I might add that I'm on board right up to that point.
What I don't get is the crowning of Oklahoma State as an equal partner in the Big XII with Oklahoma and Texas. Last I checked they're still pretty far down the list in terms of conference championships, BCS bowl appearances, national championships and let's not even jump into the series standings between these schools.
I'm all for giving credit where it is do and because of that I have no problem whatsoever putting O-State right next to Kansas State on the Big XII totem pole. The Wildcats knocked off Oklahoma in the 2003 Big XII championship game and then..well they pretty much disappeared from the college football map. If OSU wants more prestige than that then they will have to earn it. Otherwise they're in the one hit wonder category. That Kansas State team was led by two of the greatest offensive players in school history. They were gone the next year and so was the Wildcat's reign in the Big XII. Sounds very familiar to the situation going on up in the northern part of the state, doesn't it?
Of course don't expect the media to buy into that. In the dead season of college sports they've got to produce something that will get people
reading talking. That's where stories like the one ESPN's David Ubben published today come from. It was in the prep work for this story when Oklahoma State offensive coordinator Todd Monken decided to take Landry Jones to task and make light of Oklahoma's injury situation.
Of course its not the first time the world wide leader has over-hyped and over-blown a team or situation. Obviously prognostication is a major part of the job these guys do, but come on. Ubben says that O-State's win over the Sooners shook up the Big XII. He's right, it did last season but anything beyond that is still very much open for debate and won't be known for sure until this fall.
The story would have been much better served if taken from the angle of what the 2011 season meant to OSU and the fans. It has been a long time coming for the Cowboys and is still being celebrated in mass. Instead we get comments like Isaiah Anderson's when he said, ""Oklahoma's not the only team in Oklahoma anymore. They can't call it the Sooner State."
Um, yeah, we can. One season doesn't make up for over a century of failures. Last I checked the series record stood at 82-17-7 and OU had a 7-0 edge in football national championships. It still is the Sooner state and will be for a long, long time.
Monken picked up on something that no one else really seems to have. "I said it then: If not now, then when? When is that gonna happen?" Monken said. "We got ‘em here, everything's on the line, we've had a bye week, we're playing good football. We're healthy. They weren't."
Not to take away from O-State's accomplishments but Texas was down and Oklahoma was injured. The stars aligned perfectly for OSU's championship season and they were able to take full advantage of it and I say kudos to them. I also say that with all the trash talk Monken and some players have thrown out there (he's most likely going to have to eat his words when he trots a freshman QB on the field this fall) and the hype that the media is putting behind them the stars had better align once more in 2012. Otherwise we'll be calling them the Right Said Fred, Sir Mix-A-Lot and House of Pain type one hit wonders of the Big XII instead of equals to Oklahoma and Texas.