Breaking down the Sooners' bowl outlook

By Jake Trotter Modified: November 21, 2010 at 7:47 pm •  Published: November 21, 2010

If OU beats OSU and wins the Big 12 title:

Win the next two games, and OU's bowl future is simple. The Sooners would go to the Fiesta Bowl and probably face the Big East champ, which would either be Pittsburgh, Connecticut or West Virginia, depending on what happens the last two weeks of the season.

OU would be double-digit favorites against any of the three and would have a great opportunity to vanquish its BCS bowl slump.

If OU beats OSU and loses the Big 12 title:

The Cotton Bowl has implied it would not be inclined to invite the Big 12 title loser back only a month after playing there.

That would probably drop the Sooners to the Alamo Bowl, but waiting there would be a big-time matchup against either Stanford or Arizona. Either opponent would be far more compelling than whoever OU would get in the Fiesta Bowl.

If OU loses to OSU:

Until recently, it looked like a Bedlam loss would surely send the Sooners to the Cotton Bowl. But Texas A&M's late-season surge, which includes a win over OU, no longer makes that so certain. If the Aggies go on to beat Texas this weekend, they might get the nod over OU. Not only would Texas A&M have the hot hand, the Aggies would have a better Big 12 record than OU, the head-to-head edge over the Sooners and an invigorated fan base. Plus, Texas A&M has been invited to the Cotton only once in 12 years.

If the Cotton did take the Aggies, OU would fall to the Insight Bowl, which now gets the fourth pick in the Big 12.

But like the Alamo, a compelling matchup would await as a consolation. Iowa (Bob Stoops' alma mater), Penn State, Illinois and Michigan are all possibilities to represent the Big Ten in the Insight.

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