With the biggest weekend of college football games so far kicking off on Saturday, we asked our panel of experts to get down to the nitty-gritty. How can each team win? Here's what they had to say about.
1. What's the biggest key to victory in the OU-Texas game?
Columnist Berry Tramel: Turnovers. Don't commit turnovers. If OU doesn't turn the ball over, Texas will be hard-pressed to win. If OU turns it over, UT's chances soar.
Columnist Jenni Carlson: The biggest key is the least sexy one — offensive line play. Getting pressure on both of these quarterbacks is vital to disrupting the offenses. If either Sam Bradford or Colt McCoy has time to pick apart a secondary, they'll do it. The team with the offensive line that keeps its quarterback cleanest will win the game.
OU beat writer Jake Trotter: Turnovers. The team with the least amount of turnovers has won this game 9 of the last 10 years. So far, OU has been great in that category, having yet to lose a fumble.
Columnist John Rohde: Leading rushers. If DeMarco Murray runs for 100 yards, there will be no stopping the Oklahoma offense, which is lethal even when he doesn't rush for 100 yards. If Colt McCoy is the Longhorns' leading rusher, they might lose by three touchdowns. McCoy needs run support.
OSU beat writer Scott Wright: Running the ball. Both teams are strong up front on defense, so the team that can establish the run will ease things for their quarterback.
OU beat writer John Helsley: Play sharp. The Sooners are the better team. They're more talented. Limit turnovers and penalties and just do what they do - which is feature Sammy B and the Pass Catchers - and they win in a walk.
2. What's the biggest key to victory in the OSU-Missouri game?
Wright: Defensive stops. Both of these offenses have the ability to score on every possession. The defense that comes away with more stops will win the game.
Tramel: OSU's offense has to play well to give the Cowboys a chance to win. Actually, that's not correct. OSU's offense has to play lights out to give the Cowboys a chance to win. I see no way OSU's defense will slow Mizzou. The Tigers will score at least 42. Which means OSU has to win this game 45-42, 49-45, something like that.
Helsley: Score. And keep scoring. Let's not kid ourselves, the OSU defense remains a liability, unless it can produce a few turnovers, which would help tremendously here. But the Mizzou D ain't all that, either. Illinois rolled up big yards and points against the Tigers, OSU can, too.
Trotter: Defense. The team that plays the better defense will win this game. 50 points might be needed to win, so we're not talking about a lot of defense. But the team that can cause a turnover or two, or force a three-and-out or two, will be in great shape, because we know what these offenses can do.
Carlson: The biggest key is the least obvious one — running games. In particular, OSU's running game. Sure, all the talk this week has revolved around these high-powered, high-flying offenses. But if the Cowboys want to score the upset, they have to run the ball effectively. Doing that will shorten the game, also giving the OSU defense a rest and keeping the Missouri offense off the field.
Rohde: Defense. Neither team has a defense capable of stopping the opposing offense, so the defense that stinks less, wins. Special teams also could have a big swing vote, with Dez Bryant and Jeremy Maclin playing "Can you top this?"
3. Complete this sentence and explain. The best quarterback playing in these two games is ...
Tramel: Chase Daniel is the best quarterback playing in these two games. He can run and throw, and the way he directs Missouri's offense is amazing. Have you seen how impressive Bradford has been these last five games, getting OU's no-huddle offense in the right play and on the proper timing? Daniel's been doing that for three years. All four QBs are great. All but Colt McCoy have a chance to be the best quarterback in school history, and Colt's out only because of Bobby Layne and Vince Young. But Daniel, the only senior, is the best.
Rohde: Oklahoma's Sam Bradford. Each quarterback is terrific, but Bradford beats them all in the one category that often matters most in big games -- composure. The kid doesn't get rattled.
Carlson: Grrrr, this is a tough one. I'm giving the nod to Sam Bradford, but for now, I'm still giving the nod on my Heisman ballot to Chase Daniel. Let me explain. I look at the Heisman as the award for a great player who is also most valuable to his team. On quarterbacking alone, I think Bradford is better than Daniel, hence my answer for this question. In terms of being important to his team, I think Daniel is more important for Missouri's success than Bradford is for Oklahoma, hence my ballot for Heisman.
Trotter: Chase Daniel. But, that could change by Saturday night. All four QBs in this game can make claims to All-Big 12 QB with strong performances. OSU's Zac Robinson, however, has the most to gain as he is often unfairly overlooked in this league, which is loaded at the position.