OU 26, Missouri 10

OU hadn’t won on the road this year, Missouri hadn’t lost its last eight games at home, and Saturday’s OU-Missouri game was the only match between two ranked teams all day (though, undoubtedly, some people are reconsidering Oregon State’s ranking right about now). It might have been a close game had Missouri not made so many mistakes – OU scored all 26 of its points off of Tiger mistakes, winning the game handily 26-10.

The Pride took a 100-piece pep band to the game, and ABC had them miked pretty well – I heard more of the pep band than I did the Missouri band, which seems to be ABC’s way if OU is winning. (From the Cotton Bowl, I thought ABC showed a lot more of the Texas band.)

It was a long trip for an 11:00 AM game, but the traveling has only started. The full 314-member Pride of Oklahoma travels to College Station, TX, this weekend for the OU vs. Texas A&M game – and ABC announced late yesterday that it has chosen a 7:00 PM kickoff time (almost guaranteeing HDTV coverage). Our current keepers of tradition will appear at some pep & alumni events in the Houston area on Friday night, so that makes it a very long Saturday, followed by a big game and a long ride home, arriving back in Norman barely in time for some church services. Keep your eye on the band’s Web site for potential ways we can help them out!

The Aggies and the Sooners are #2 and #3, respectively, in the Big 12 South – the Aggies are 4-1 in conference play and the Sooners are 3-1. (Everyone else in the Big 12 started conference play on September 28, the original date of the OU-OSU game. Since that was moved to November 25, both OU and OSU have one fewer conference game than everyone else until that day, literally the end of the regular season.) If OU wins on Saturday night, the Sooners will finish at least second in the Big 12 South even if they should lose one more game and A&M wins out, because both teams would then finish with 6-2 conference records and OU wins the tie-breaker by winning this Saturday night. (It also works the other way around, but we don’t like to think about that.)

Texas came back to win a conference game for the second time in two weeks and remains on top of the division at 5-0. For the Sooners to win the Big 12 South, OU has to win out and Texas has to lose two of its last three games – hosting OSU on Saturday, traveling to KSU on November 11, and hosting A&M on the day after Thanksgiving. My third rule of college football is “never underestimate the ability of the team in orange to choke,” but it does seem like a long-shot.

In the Big 12 North, both Missouri and Nebraska lost yesterday, giving both of them 3-2 conference records, ahead of KSU at 2-3, KU and CU at 1-4, and poor Iowa State at 0-5. Missouri plays Nebraska next weekend in the 11:00 AM ABC game, and the winner will almost certainly capture the Big 12 North crown, playing the South division winner (likely Texas) in the championship game in Kansas City on December 2 at 7 PM. (This would be the first conference championship game of the Stoops era to be played in Arrowhead Stadium without The Pride of Oklahoma present, so don’t rule fate out yet!)

The Sooners have four games left, and the full Pride will be at three of them – at A&M this Saturday, back at Owen Field on November 11 for the final home game of the season vs. Texas Tech (it’s Senior Day and Dad’s Day Parents’ Day), and in Stillwater on November 25 – plus, very likely, a bowl game since the 6-2 Sooners are now bowl-eligible. If they run the table, a Cotton Bowl berth seems likely; one additional loss might set up a Holiday Bowl rematch with our old friends the Oregon Ducks. It’s also still possible that the Sooners could go to the Alamo Bowl for the first time – Jerry Palm, who runs the invaluable CollegeBCS.com site (a great use of $15 if you love tracking college football), still projects the Alamo Bowl will host a rematch of the Jan 1, 1986 Orange Bowl – Penn State vs. Oklahoma. (I was at that game when the Sooners won the national championship – anyone else?)

I’m aware we’re having a bit of trouble in some cases with logging in and out of this Web site – if you’re logged in at home or on a computer you control, try not to log out because you may not be able to, or may not be able to log in. If you’re not logged in, you may not be able to do so for now. We have a support ticket in and hope to have a solution very soon. In the meantime – BOOMER SOONER!