STILLWATER — Oklahoma State sits squarely at the mid-way mark of this season.
Six games played.
Six games to go.
Yet, we still don't know how good these Cowboys are. There is more evidence that they're much more like the team that lost to Arizona and Texas, then struggled against Kansas than the team that dominated Iowa State.
But really, do we know for sure?
We're about to find out.
Saturday's home game against TCU starts a definitive stretch for OSU. Following the Horned Frogs, who are among the others-receiving-votes crowd in the major polls, the Cowboys play at Kansas State, vs. West Virginia, vs. Texas Tech and at Oklahoma.
All four are top-25 teams.
If you want to get more specific — and more scary — all of them are ranked in the top 19 of the BCS standings. K-State is No. 3, West Virginia No. 19, Texas Tech No. 14 and OU No. 8.
This makes for a good-news, bad-news scenario for the Cowboys.
Let's start with the good news.
OSU controls its own destiny in the Big 12. Even with that controversial loss to Texas, which has since lost twice, the Cowboys will claim the conference crown if they win out.
The only other team that can say that right now is K-State.
And after the way the Cowboys played last week against the Cyclones, it seems like OSU is better prepared than ever to make a run. The defense played its best game of the season, looking like the dominant bunch everyone expected it to be this season, and the offense scored more points against Iowa State than a stellar K-State team did only a week earlier.
But, of course, that was also the game in which J.W. Walsh was injured.
Which brings us to the bad news part of this scenario.
The Cowboys are a banged up bunch. Quarterback. Wide receiver. Cornerback. All of those positions have been hit especially hard by injury, and because of that, the Cowboys have struggled to find consistency in this pass-happy league.
Can they patch those areas up enough to beat K-State, West Virginia, Tech and OU in consecutive weeks?
We will have a better idea by sundown Saturday.
TCU will be a stout test, and if OSU plays as well as it did a week ago, it will win by double digits. It will also have strung together a couple of solid victories. That's the sign of a team coming together.
But if OSU has some of the same issues that proved costly against Arizona and Texas, it will be tough to see the Cowboys winning any of those next four games, much less all of them.
We're about to start finding out what kind of team OSU has, for better or worse.
Jenni Carlson: Jenni can be reached at (405) 475-4125. You can also like her at facebook.com/JenniCarlsonOK, follow her at twitter.com/jennicarlson_ok or view her personality page at newsok.com/jennicarlson.