Week 4 was headlined by two upsets, and fans of the Oklahoma Sooners are experiencing a combination of thankfulness and frustration after the Army Black Knights came as close as they did to bumping that number to three.
There are a number of words to describe Saturday evening’s events — weird, special, memorable, maddening and relieving come to mind. The juxtaposition of Army West Point (and all of the pageantry that accompanied their presence) with a far-from-conventional OU win leaves us all with a mixture of emotions. The game itself was often brutal, but there were definitely some overwhelmingly positive moments that OU fans will never forget.
Probably don't even need to wait until Monday to know Kenneth Murray will be the Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week. pic.twitter.com/PbvG2b4L5d— Eddie Radosevich (@Eddie_Rado) September 23, 2018
OU backup punter Bookie Radley-Hiles pic.twitter.com/WeBzxJ6JUK— C&C Machine - Oklahoma SB Nation (@CCMachine) September 23, 2018
For those of us who were in attendance, this all served as a memory that will last a lifetime. Additionally, as down as some of us might be about certain aspects of the performance, we’re feeling much better than Oklahoma State fans at the moment. So we’ve got that going for us, which is nice.
1. Oklahoma (4-0, 1-0) - Sitting through the game itself was akin to chewing glass for three hours (s/o to Austin Brown), although some of what we witnessed can be taken with a grain of salt. Plenty of blame should fall at the feet of Mike Stoops, who lost the benefit of the doubt long ago. At times, his unit displayed a degree of helplessness that we’ve grown all too accustomed to seeing. Having said that, OU isn’t going to see the triple option for another two years, and the Sooners lived to look good another day. Oh, and this offense is still going to outscore pretty much everyone (provided it sees the field for more than 15 minutes).
2. West Virginia (3-0, 1-0) - I’d still like to see how this defense fares against a true Big 12 offense (Kansas State’s offense is barely DI-caliber), but this team checks off most other boxes. The ‘Eers have an opportunity to check off one of the remaining boxes this coming weekend when they head to Lubbock for what could be an incredibly entertaining game.
And here’s where this gets tricky...
3. Texas (3-1, 1-0) - *Ducks for cover*
No, Texas is not back, but picking up a win over TCU for the first time since 2013 is a step in the right direction. This defense has some salt to it and will probably get stronger as the season progresses.
4. TCU (2-2, 0-1) - The difference in the aforementioned game was the turnover differential, which was 4-0 in favor of Texas. That’s been TCU’s downfall in consecutive weeks, but there’s plenty of reason to believe that the Frogs can end up back in Arlington if they clean that up.
5. Texas Tech (3-1, 1-0) - I don’t know what the hell to make of this team, but there’s hope for Kliff Kingsbury yet. One week the Raiders are in a shootout with Houston, and the next they’re holding Oklahoma State to 17 points. The latter may have more to do with Corndog and the OSU OL being subpar, but regardless, Tech is carrying some momentum into its matchup with WVU.
6. Iowa State (1-2, 0-1) - 1-2 with a 26-13 home win over Akron obviously doesn’t look great on paper, but the Zips are actually a decent squad. However, the next three weeks are brutal, as the ‘Clones are heading to Stillwater and Morgantown before facing TCU in Ames. If they can escape with a 2-4 or 3-3 record, the home stretch should allow them to become bowl-eligible.
7. Oklahoma State (3-1, 0-1) - As mentioned above, that offensive line was truly exposed, and it didn’t exactly occur against an elite defensive front. Luckily for Gundy and Co., the Jayhawks are next up on the schedule.
8. Baylor (3-1, 1-0) - The Bears have finally settled on Charlie Brewer at QB, and he had a decent showing against Kansas (don’t laugh) on Saturday going 19/27 for 221 yards and three TDs while adding 57 yards on the ground. Brewer isn’t a world-beater, but he and his talented targets (including former Tennessee RB and current BU WR Jalen Hurd) are definitely good enough to give OU’s defense some trouble on Saturday.
9. Kansas State (2-2, 0-1) - The Wildcats have played two P5 opponents and haven’t scored an offensive TD against either one of them. This is beginning to look like Bill Snyder’s worst team. Then again, I think I’ve said that a few times only for K-State to finish with seven or eight wins. This week, Snyder will have an opportunity to beat Texas — something KSU has done five straight times in Manhattan.
10. Kansas (2-2, 0-1) - Few things were funnier than Kansas beating Texas in football, but Oklahoma State somehow losing to Kansas in football would be awfully sweet for those of us residing in the Sooner State. It’s not going to happen, but one can dream, right?
Big 12 Schedule - Week 4
Oklahoma State at Kansas - FSN, 11 a.m.
West Virginia at Texas Tech - ESPN2, 11 a.m.
Baylor at Oklahoma - ABC, 2:30 p.m.
Texas at Kansas State - FS1, 2:30 p.m.
Iowa State at TCU - ESPNU, 6:00 p.m.