Someone has to write this, right?
As I sit here, just having watched Texas get it* absolutely handed to them at home by a team that K-State took care of, currently watching an OU team allow Cincinnati to keep hanging around, and thinking back to the sort of underrated movie magic that this Oklahoma State team has shown thus far, I can't help but feel that the prospect of the Cowboys taking the South has to at least be considered doesn't it? It doesn't? Well I've already written the intro sentence so I'll go ahead and make a case for it.... or at least outline three indicators that this may be the Cowboy team that does it.
*it = their own ass
Indicator #1: The underrated movie magic. For something like this to happen, there has to be an element of movie magic involved. An underdog team full of scrappy, mostly first year starters taking the prize that has eluded this program for 14 years, and since forever if you go back to the Big 8 days, does not just all of a sudden get their wish.... some magic needs to happen.... things need to go their way. And I feel like this team has some magic in them. Yes I know that through 3 weeks Oklahoma State has played the 118th rated schedule (per sagarin), but watching this team it feels like they have luck on their side. While there is no way to really put any stats to it, in every game so far, when the Cowboys have needed a big play, they have gotten it, and when they have needed a key stop, they have gotten it. I realize that this isn't really "luck", and that all these events were accomplished with sound play and good coaching, but I am using the word luck to represent the right thing happening for this team at the right time.
Indicator #2: This is the first time in a while where it looks like we may have a complete team. While the pure talent of last years team isn't here anymore, all the pieces of this year's team feel like they fit together in a way last year's team never did. Every player's specialty seems to fit a specific need, and we aren't having to force talent onto the field in areas it doesn't fit. From the way Hunter, Randle, and Smith all complement each other's unique running styles, to the starting LBs unique specialties (Lemon is the leader, Thomas is the versatility, and Gent is the rock) that mesh, without overlapping too much, and create a solid unit... this is a team where it feels like the whole is so much greater than the sum of its parts, and every players role serves to make their teammates better.
Indicator #3: The rest of the South is either bad, or undependable. And I don't mean that there are some bad teams and some undependable teams, I mean that we still don't yet know if all of these teams are bad, or just prone to a bad game here and there. Either way, there is a definite opening in the division this season that is waiting for someone to seize it. Pre-season, the consensus was that A&M would be the team with a chance to do it... well, the same opportunity that exists for A&M, also exists for any non-Sooner/Longhorn team in the South.
Presumably we will know a lot more after Thursday's game, but right now, given what we have seen from the Cowboys and from the rest of the South, don't we have to at least start letting ourselves be open to the idea of taking the division? I'm not saying it should be expected or anything like that, I am merely saying that we might be at a point where we can consider starting a sentence with a phrase like: "If we hope to be in contention for the South, we need to... ". Where 3 weeks ago whatever point we were making would have started with: "If we hope to win 8 games we need to...".