Possible opponents: USC, UCLA, Stanford
Projected by: ESPN's Brad Edwards (vs. USC)
How OSU gets here: The Cowboys' Nov. 17 contest against Texas Tech could ultimately decide which team goes to San Antonio.
Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl
Location: Tempe, Ariz.
Date: Dec. 29
Matchup: Big 12 No. 4 vs. Big Ten No. 4/5
History: Beat Indiana 49-33 in 2007 (Insight Bowl)
Possible opponents: Northwestern, Michigan State
Projected by: CBS' Jerry Palm (vs. Northwestern), College Football News (vs. Northwestern), Sporting News (vs. Michigan State), ESPN's Mark Schlabach (vs. Northwestern)
How OSU gets here: Clearly, this is where most experts think the Cowboys will land right now. Splitting its final four games could send OSU back to the Grand Canyon State for the third time in less than a year.
Location: San Diego, Calif.
Date: Dec. 27
Matchup: Big 12 No. 5 vs. Pac-12 No. 3
History: Lost to Oregon 42-31 in 2008; Beat Wyoming 62-14 in 1988
Possible opponents: UCLA, USC
Projected by: ESPN's David Ubben
How OSU gets here: The middle of the Big 12 is going to be jumbled, so a 5-4 conference record put OSU here, as well.
Meineke Car Care of Texas Bowl
Date: Dec. 28
Matchup: Big 12 No. 6 vs. Big Ten No. 6
History: Beat Southern Miss 33-23 in 2002 (Houston Bowl)
Possible opponents: Minnesota, Iowa
How OSU gets here: If the Cowboys' November schedule is as brutal as we thought a week ago (or three days ago), they could limp to a 6-6 (4-5 Big 12) record and finish the season in the same stadium in which they will start their 2013 campaign against Mississippi State.