The Oklahoman's Berry Tramel took questions from readers in today's Power Lunch Chat. Join our Power Lunch Chats Monday-Friday at 11 a.m. on NewsOK.com/Sports.
At this point, do you think there is much hope any of the local cable providers are going to pick up the OSU-AZ game?
Yes, I think there is hope. I heard Robert Allen say the process could go into Thursday, so that's today. I think it's possible. It's a total mess, by the way. This is a good lesson for the Big 12 and other conferences. Make it clear in any future non-conference schedules that the game cannot be televised on a conference (or school) network unless it is made available off said network in the opponent's market.
Your thoughts on the Dallas Cowboys game last night?
Great football game. I love the NFL, and that's why. Defensive standoff in the first half, then an offensive show in the second half. The Cowboys looked like they were in total control, played well the entire second half and STILL had to make that key first down late to keep the G-Men at bay. The NFL is all about quality control. Good for Kevin Ogletree, who had a big game, and good for DeMarco Murray, who had another big game. I've got an interesting blog on Murray. Check it out.
If Dallas stays healthy this season, how far do you see them going?
I picked the Cowboys to win the NFC East. So I think they will be in prime position come the playoffs. But it won't be easy, even then. The last two Super Bowl winners came through the NFC wild card.
What areas does OU need to improve in to contend for the Big 12 title, and do you think they will?
Yes, I think OU will contend for the Big 12 title. Here's where they need to improve from Saturday night: 1. Pass blocking. Protect Landry better. 2. Get open on pass routes. I thought the receivers did a poor job of getting open. 3. Special teams. Don't allow kicks to be blocked. 4. Stay in your gaps on defense. The ends crashed down, letting UTEP's Nathan Jeffrey spring outside.
WVU gave up quite a few points last week, do you see them kind of like Tech in previous years? Lots of offense but can't stop anyone?
I think they're better than Tech, except maybe that 2008 Leach team, which was really good. But yes, I think you can score on West Virginia. And we'll see if the WVU offense can stay hot. The Mountaineers weren't great on offense until the end of the season. Now they've gone for 69 and 70 in back to back games. Keep that up, and it's Fiesta Bowl for West Virginia.
Do you think OSU will cover the 13.5 points this weekend at Arizona?
I'd guess it will be a close game. Heck, last year, OSU won just 37-14 in Stillwater. That's only 23 points, with Blackmon and Weeden and a home game and a terrible 'Zona defense. The defense is still bad, but it's hard to rout somebody on the road. OSU did it a couple of times last year, but it's still hard.
On the Browns. Do you think that Richardson coming back is going to help take the pressure off of Weeden to the point that people will shut up about McCoy?
No. I didn't know anyone was talking about McCoy. But either way, Weeden's going to have to produce. The Browns are tired of losing. Weeden will get a year or two to produce, and if he doesn't get it done, then he's out just like McCoy was. The reason so many young QBs are taking over NFL teams is not because it's a wave of great young talent. It's just that NFL teams have no patience anymore.