NORMAN — No. 13 Oklahoma and No. 21 Oklahoma State meet Saturday on Owen Field.
Here's a unit-by-unit look at who has the edge in this year's edition of Bedlam.
Oklahoma: Landry Jones played the finest game of his career last weekend at West Virginia, and even succeeded in an area usually reserved for the Belldozer — the redzone. Jones' excellent play of late has overshadowed Blake Bell's decreased productivity, but Bell is still a threat.
Oklahoma State: After injuries caused a revolving door at the position for most of the season, redshirt junior Clint Chelf has solidified himself as the starter for Bedlam after three consecutive strong performances. Chelf was poised when thrown into emergency duty in a hostile environment against Kansas State three weeks ago, but this will be his first Bedlam start. J.W. Walsh was also used in short-yardage and goal-line situations against Texas Tech, and Wes Lunt is available if necessary.
Oklahoma: Damien Williams finally broke off another long touchdown run against West Virginia after a long slump, but was pretty well stuffed other than that. Brennan Clay's improved play has helped make up for Dominique Whaley's continued, mysterious absence. Fullback Trey Millard can also make things happen when he gets carries/catches.
Oklahoma State: Joseph Randle has not reached 100 yards in three consecutive games, but that's likely in part because defenses are focusing on stopping the dynamic back. Still, Randle is a dangerous weapon with the ball in his hands as both a runner and receiver. And power back Jeremy Smith, who has battled a lingering ankle injury for much of the season, appears to have his burst back.
Oklahoma: The Sooners have stockpiled talented receivers this season, with transfers like Justin Brown and Jalen Saunders becoming heavily involved in the offense and freshman Sterling Shepard emerging. Junior Kenny Stills is having his best season yet and remains the Sooners' leading receiver. Despite losing Ryan Broyles — the greatest receiver in school history — OU's overall receiving corps is exponentially better than it was last year.
Oklahoma State: Despite losing Tracy Moore, who coach Mike Gundy calls the Cowboys' best offensive player, OSU has gotten solid production from its receivers. It doesn't have the dominant pass-catcher like Justin Blackmon, but Josh Stewart has turned into a versatile go-to target that can shake defenders in space. Isaiah Anderson's return from a finger injury gives the Cowboys a speedy deep threat they have been lacking, while Charlie Moore and Blake Jackson are both capable of big moments.
Oklahoma: Ben Habern, Tyler Evans and Nila Kasitati were lost for the year. Gabe Ikard, Bronson Irwin, Lane Johnson, Adam Shead and Daryl Williams have all been injured at one time or another during the season. Considering all that, the Sooner offensive line hasn't played terrible. Still, it's a thin unit that cannot afford any more injuries.
Oklahoma State: The Cowboys have continued their stout offensive line play under Joe Wickline, opening holes for Randle and Co. and protecting whoever is playing quarterback. OSU ranks fifth in the nation in sacks allowed. The Cowboys have rolled out the same starting five — Parker Graham, Jonathan Rush, Evan Epstein, Lane Taylor and Daniel Koenig — in seven of their 10 games, but Brandon Webb has replaced Rush at left guard in recent weeks and Devin Davis made his first-career start at left tackle against Tech.
Oklahoma: The senior-dominated line has been hot and cold this season. In some games, the unit looks fantastic, but during others, it seems nonexistent. There's no doubt that talent and leadership is there along the line, but its productivity will be critical to any OU success against the powerful OSU offense.
Oklahoma State: The defensive tackle duo of Calvin Barnett and James Castleman has given the Cowboys a gigantic boost on the interior, plugging holes in the middle and making plays behind the line of scrimmage. Last week against Tech, the Cowboys were able to get pressure on Seth Doege without blitzing. That will be key against Landry Jones, who is known to make mistakes when the pocket breaks down.
Oklahoma: The last couple weeks, it's been easy to forget that OU even has linebackers on its roster. Tom Wort, Corey Nelson and Aaron Franklin have all played well sometimes and poorly other times, but they'll all be needed against the Cowboys.
Oklahoma State: OSU returned all three starters at linebacker, and it's shown with the group's solid play, particularly against the run. Lyndell Johnson is an X-Factor player with the speed and athleticism and speed to make plays against the run and pass.
Oklahoma: The defensive backs looked drastically improved from last season when the Sooners won at Texas Tech and beat the Longhorns. But lately, they've tended to struggled in tackling and sometimes in coverage. Aaron Colvin was fantastic earlier this season and played well at times against West Virginia, but was beaten badly by Stedman Bailey in the second half. Tony Jefferson and Javon Harris are an excellent safety duo when at their best.
Oklahoma State: The Cowboy secondary has played better in recent weeks, but is absolutely the weakest — or most inconsistent, at least — part of this defense. Who would have thought that at the start of the season, with cornerbacks Brodrick Brown and Justin Gilbert returning? Daytawion Lowe has been steady at free safety, however, and strong safety Shamiel Gary has improved greatly throughout the season.
Oklahoma: Brennan Clay's kickoff returns have been somewhat overshadowed of late, but his ability in that area has helped OU's offense immensely. Justin Brown has been good at returning punts, and Michael Hunnicutt is usually reliable — although he did have a rare missed field goal last week. Tress Way's punting has been solid.
Oklahoma State: The Cowboys were terrible on special teams against Kansas State, but have been sound for most of the season and spectacular the last two weeks. Quinn Sharp is still arguably the best all-around kicker in the country, and Gilbert is still capable of taking a kickoff return to the house at any time.
Oklahoma: Bob Stoops is 6-1 against Mike Gundy, with the only loss coming in last year's blowout. Both staffs have done admirable jobs this season in getting the most out of inexperienced, thin units and new players.
Oklahoma State: Gundy won three national Coach of the Year awards in 2011, but it's possible he and his staff have done a better job this season with all the injuries and adversity the Cowboys have faced. Last year's victory over Stoops was big, and the gap between the coaches is closing, but Stoops still holds a slight edge because of his history against Gundy in this game.