Missouri and Oklahoma State came so close to conference titles and being in the Bowl Championship Series.
The No. 9 Tigers and No. 13 Cowboys, who in the past have been in two leagues together, will instead play each other Jan. 3 in the Cotton Bowl, a pretty nice consolation a day after both missed shots at conference championships.
"Playing in the Cotton Bowl is a great reward for our team," Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy said Sunday after the matchup was announced. "Certainly you want to be in a BCS bowl because it means you won a conference championship. ... This location and venue, this is a great opportunity for the team and our fans."
After this season's game, the Cotton Bowl will become part of the annual rotation for semifinal games in the new College Football Playoff. The game is played in the Dallas Cowboys' massive stadium where the first national championship in the post-BCS era will be held next season.
Oklahoma State (10-2) was on track for a Big 12 title and a spot in the Bowl Championship Series before a 33-24 loss at home to Oklahoma on Saturday.
Missouri (11-2) is coming off a 59-42 loss to Auburn in the SEC championship game in only its second season in that league.
"We know firsthand just how great of a trip this is, and how first-class of an operation the Cotton Bowl runs," said Missouri coach Gary Pinkel, who is taking the Tigers to their ninth bowl in 13 seasons there.
Mizzou made its SEC debut in 2012 with its first losing season in eight years, and went only 2-6 in league play. The Tigers this season were SEC Eastern Division champions with a 7-1 conference record.
When Gundy cast a vote last week for some organization's coach of the year honor, he voted for Pinkel.