Ever since Matt Campbell arrived and turned Iowa State into a legitimate program, Texas’ showdown with the Cyclones has taken on massive importance at the end of the year when it comes up on the schedule.
There’s some potential for trouble in the postponement of Texas’ road trip to Lawrence to play the Jayhawks. Three different troubling scenarios now loom for the Longhorns. Scenario one sees Oklahoma beat Oklahoma State in Bedlam on Saturday night and then each win out, Texas beats Iowa State and Kansas State, and then all they have to do in order to enter a three-way tie atop the standings is go on the road the week before the Big 12 Championship Game and beat the Jayhawks.
Texas has now escaped two of the most dangerous games on the schedule in consecutive weeks. The road trip to Stillwater was the obvious test for the season. Mike Gundy’s Cowboys this season often field the largest share of elite athletes, plus their pass defense and balanced, explosive offense had them undefeated heading into the Texas game. Neal Brown’s West Virginia Mountaineers are less explosive but could still present Texas’ struggling offensive line with a high level defensive front.
Texas’ win over Oklahoma State was frankly bizarre. When you’re outgained 530 yards to 287 and go 2/15 on third down typically you don’t feel great about your chances of victory. But Texas did win, thanks to four Oklahoma State turnovers, a Longhorn special teams touchdown, and a lot of veteran decision-making and playmaking by Sam Ehlinger.
Texas’ trip to Stillwater this weekend is going to be its toughest game of the season. There are a number of difficult games and opponents on the schedule, neither K-State nor Iowa State are a cakewalk for the Longhorns and the Sooners never have less talent as anyone, but Oklahoma State might be the best team in the league. Texas was unfortunate enough to draw them in Stillwater on Halloween night.