Now OSU gets five home games in the league. The Cowboys go to OU and Kansas State, but they get Texas, West Virginia, TCU and Texas Tech in Stillwater.
Gundy said preseason predictions are based first on quarterback and then defensive status. Lunt is a mystery, but OSU's defense is not.
The Cowboys led the Big 12 in scoring defense in conference play last season; you can look it up.
Defensive coordinator Bill Young said he believes his unit a year ago was championship caliber. “We played some really good offensive football teams, and we played pretty well,” he said.
And now State figures to be even better, with DBs like Brod Brown, Justin Gilbert and Daytawion Lowe, and linebackers like Alex Elkins and Shaun Lewis.
“I don't know that we've got a bunch of first-round draft choices, but we're a real solid football team,” Young said.
And we all know the scoop on offense. As Lunt goes, so go the Cowboys.
“I don't think we're built offensively for our quarterback not to play well and still have a great day offensively,” said o-coordinator Todd Monken. “When he plays well, we'll have a good day offensively. When he doesn't play well, we won't.”
Lunt is the ultimate unknown. But he's surrounded by a veteran line – even with the loss of suspended tackle Michael Bowie – and playmakers galore.
“Are we awfully thin? Yes,” Monken said. “Do we have enough talent? Yes.
“That doesn't always lead to the kind of success you'd like. But if you do the right things and players believe, play good football, you give yourself a chance.”
The Big 12 poll put the Cowboys fourth in the 2012 projections. I had OSU third. I might be low.
Berry Tramel: Berry can be reached at (405) 760-8080 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. He can be heard Monday through Friday from 4:40-5:20 p.m. on The Sports Animal radio network, including FM-98.1. You can also view his personality page at newsok.com/berrytramel.