Unlike recent seasons, when Oklahoma made its offensive reputation through the air, the Sooners have turned more and more to the run.
OU ranks second in the Big 12 in rushing offense at 242.3 yards per game, averaging a healthy 5.4 yards per carry. The Sooners have succeeded with several backs and been bolstered by the recent play of quarterback Trevor Knight.
The Cowboys, meanwhile, rank No. 1 in the conference in rushing defense, allowing 130 yards per game.
So if the Sooners want to get physical, OSU defensive tackle Calvin Barnett welcomes the challenge.
“I'm fine with it, just like we have been week in and week out,” Barnett said. “Every team likes to pass. Everybody wants to air it out, have the big plays. But nine times out of 10 you have to establish a run game. We've been dealing with it. This week should be no different.”
BEDLAM MEMORIES: DAYTAWION LOWE
Cowboys senior safety Daytawion Lowe, a state product out of Carl Albert High School, cherishes one memory from the last Bedlam game in Stillwater.
Not only did OSU win, 44-10, securing the Big 12 championship, Lowe made a surprising discovery amid the chaos on the field afterward: his mother.
“I was trying to get to the locker room and I ran into my mom,” Lowe said. “And I'm like, ‘What are you doin' down here? How did you get down here?' And she told me how she jumped and all that.
“I was not expecting to run into her. I would not expect her to jump onto the field. And she had on some boots.”
Fans had stormed the field, making for wall-to-wall people on the turf of Boone Pickens Stadium, making it a longshot for the two to find each other by happenstance.
“She might have gotten some help, I don't know,” Lowe said. “But she found me. It must have been motherly instincts. She hunted me down like she used to do in high school.”
Overall, Lowe counts that postgame scene a as a favorite.
“Man it was crazy,” he said. “That was the best experience of my life in Boone Pickens Stadium. Man, it was so crowded, I couldn't move.”
OSU fullback Kye Staley on the impact of this senior class:
“I feel like we've helped take Oklahoma State to a new level. It wasn't really known back when I got here. Just every year we've progressed as a team and as a whole. I feel like we've put Oklahoma State on the map, and they're just going to accomplish more as the years go on.”
SPENCER SEES VERSATILITY IN SOONERS
OU's passing game inconsistencies have prevented any Sooner receiver from posting dominant receiving numbers.
Still, Cowboys defensive coordinator Glenn Spencer said that doesn't make the Sooners any easier to defend.
“They've got a group of explosive receivers, it's not just one guy,” Spencer said. “You can see the way they spread the ball out. So there's a lot of different ways they can attack you and move the ball.
“It's a well-balanced attack. We've got a lot of respect for what they've done week in and week out. We definitely know they're going to bring their A game against us.”