STILLWATER — The first four games of the season have been like a ride on the Texas Giant at Six Flags over Texas for the Oklahoma State Cowboys. A trip on the renowned roller coaster has mirrored what the Pokes have gone through during their non-conference schedule. Let’s take a look at the good and the bad heading into OSU’s lone bye week of the season:
: The win over Georgia showed the Cowboys can have success against good teams and play good defense. Regardless of what happened in the three games following the season opening victory, that win catapulted OSU into the top five in the AP poll for the first time since 1985 and gave the Cowboys confidence they can compete at a high level.
The Cowboy injury report looks like a preseason all-Big 12 list. Dez Bryant, Perrish Cox, Kendall Hunter have each missed at least one game due to injury. Defensive end Jermiah Price and safety Markelle Martin have missed multiple games and linebacker Orie Lemon, one of OSU’s top defenders was lost for the season. Simply put, the Cowboys are beat up after a physical September.
OSU’s special teams play. Bryant and Cox change games with their kick return abilities. Teams kick it to them and they make a game-changing play, or teams kick away from them, giving OSU excellent field position. And punter Quinn Sharp has made people forget about Matt Fodge during the first four games of his career.
: The loss to Houston. The fact the Cowboys essentially beat themselves with three turnovers is what hurts the most.