Week 10 and the final home game of the season is here. That means there are four games (yes, we’re doing the bowl game) and a bye week left to determine the winner of our weekly draft.
In case you’ve forgotten, here’s the rules: Every week, each writer picks the player they think will be the MVP on offense, defense, and special teams for OSU and their opponent. If a player has the best game out of those chosen, the writer who picked him gets a point. We’ll keep track of the points through the season.
Let’s take a look at the leader board after week 9:
Cade - 28 points
Phillip - 25 points
Dustin - 23 points
Joel - 22 points
Christopher/Kyle - 20 points
Last week everyone got three points, because we all basically picked the same players. This week let’s try for a little variety, ok guys?
O - Chris Carson | D - Ramon Richards | ST - Zach Sinor
Offense: Chris Carson has been great since his return from injury. I think Gundy and Co. want to keep from burning out Justice Hill. That means more carries for Carson, and I expect, more runs in the red zone.
Defense: The secondary is going to get tested unlike in any game this season. I realize Sterns is the better choice, but I’m going “riverboat gambler” this week. The Red Raiders have to know Richards is the weak link, and will probably try and target him early and often. I’m going to put a point on Richards stepping up and making Texas Tech regret their decision.
Special Teams: You think we’re going to kick field goals against Tech? I don’t think we’ll punt a lot either, but I’m still going with Sinor.
O - Patrick Mahomes | D - Kris Williams | ST - Clayton Hatfield
Offense: Of course I’m going to pick Mahomes. We all likely will. He averages 431 passing yards a game and is second on the team in rushing yards with 260. I hope I’m wrong and he throws 3 INTs and gets sacked 10 times. I just don’t think it will happen. He is easily the most talented quarterback OSU has faced this season. Plus, Tech needs this win to feel good about their chances of making a bowl game.
Defense: Williams leads Tech’s defense in sacks (5) and TFLs (6) by a large margin. He’s also forced a fumble and blocked a kick this season. His total tackles number isn’t top 5 on the team, but he seems capable of getting into the backfield and doing some damage.
Special Teams: Here’s to hoping OSU can hold Texas Tech to a bunch of field goals.
O - James Washington | D - Jordan Sterns | ST - Zach Sinor
Offense: I don’t think it would be fair to pick both Rudolph and Mahomes, so I’ll take Washington here. He had over 200 yards receiving and 70 yards rushing last season against the Red Raiders. A repeat performance is certainly within the realm of possibility. I like my chances.
Defense: I’m not picking this for the point. Sterns will be the X-Factor for the defense on Saturday. He’s got to be on his A-Game, because you can bet your bottom dollar that Tech will want to throw it over his head all day.
Special Teams: I feel like OSU, when given an opportunity in the red zone, will be generally looking at four-down territory. Sinor’s ability to flip the field will be important on Saturday.
O - Patrick Mahomes | D - Kris Williams | ST - Clayton Hatfield
Offense: Mahomes is a freak athlete, and an incredible quarterback. Do you really need me to go into further analysis here? Mahomes is my lock of the week.
Defense: Williams leads the Red Raiders in sacks and tackles for loss. That might be something to keep an eye on this week.
Special Teams: Again, did you really think I was going to go another week without picking the kicker? I’ve got a lead to protect!
O - Mason Rudolph | D - Vincent Taylor | ST - Ben Grogan
Offense: Rudolph had a huge day against K State stats-wise. I think I'll take him again here against the worst passing defense in the Big 12. They're giving up just under 300 yards a game through the air and let Baker Mayfield throw for 545 yards and 7 touchdowns earlier this season.
Defense: Taylor has been a beast all season. I'm going to pick him again after getting me the point last week.
Special Teams: I went away from picking Grogan last week, and he ended up getting the point. I won't make that mistake again.
O - Patrick Mahomes | D - Jah'Shawn Johnson | ST - Clayton Hatfield
Offense: 3,886 passing yards, 204 rushing yards, 41 total touchdows. I have to be a stats guy, but those are ridiculous.
Defense: Texas Tech's defense is terrible. They are last in the Big 12 in nearly every defensive stat. That being said, we have to pick somebody. Johnson has been a playmaker on defense for Tech this year. He's been in the middle of a couple of turnovers and is third on the team in total tackles. That being said this defense is notttt gooooooddddd, im fact, they are.....
Special Teams: Tech hasn't really shown any playmakers on special teams this year, so I'll go with the kicker.
O - Justice Hill | D - Jordan Sterns | S - Ben Grogan
Offense: Tech is giving up almost 300 yards per game through the air, but they're also dead last in the conference in rushing defense, giving up 236 yards per game. I think Mason will have a great day, but I expect the game plan to be similar to the Baylor game - run the ball, control the clock, keep Tech's offense off the field. The Cowboys SHOULD be able to do just about whatever they want against this Tech defense, and I think deep down, they want to run the ball.
Defense: The Tech offense is insane. They're going to move the ball and they're going to score. They don't even really try to run the ball much (last in the conference at 101 yards per game on the ground). While Tech does give up 2.67 sacks per game, the overall impact of OSU's defensive line is likely to be minimized by the pace of the Tech offense. With the ball moving around as quickly as it will be, I'll take Sterns to be all over the field, lead the team in tackles, and maybe even get a pick off Mahomes.
Special Teams: If this ends up being Zach Sinor, the OSU offense will have a lot of questions to answer. I still haven't seen a reason to bet on the Cowboys' return game. Even if it's all XPs, Grogan should have ample opportunities on Saturday.
O - Patrick Mahomes | D - Jordyn Brooks | S - Clayton Hatfield
Offense: Mahomes is the easy choice here. He's on an absurd pace in terms of passing yards and total offense yardage. The Oklahoma State pass defense has been less than stellar so far this season, and Mahomes is far and away the best talent they've faced. He does make some mistakes and has a tendency to force things a little, but he's going to put up numbers, there's really no doubt about that.
Defense: Kris Williams is enticing, as he leads the team in tackles for loss and sacks, but Jordyn Brooks leads the team in tackles from his linebacker spot and I don't expect Rudolph to be sitting in the pocket, holding onto the ball much on Saturday, so Williams' chances for multiple sacks probably aren't great. I'll take the freshman LB, who I think will have a ton of opportunities to introduce himself to Justice Hill and Chris Carson.
Special Teams: When Tech is forced to punt, Michael Barden has done a fine job of it, with seven downed inside the 20 and five punts over 50 yards, but I just don't expect Tech to punt much. Clayton Hatfield has had a good season kicking for the Red Raiders, and he will get his chances on Saturday. I hope the Cowboys' defense can avoid giving up big plays and buckle down in the red zone and give Hatfield FG chances instead of XPs, but either way I expect he will be busier than Barden.
O - James Washington | D - Ramon Richards | S - Barry J Sanders
Offense: Tech's defense is basically swiss cheese, so I expect James to have a big day. In two career games against TTU, he averages 34.7 yards per reception. I don't expect that number to fall too much after Saturday.
Defense: This is a bold strategy, but I have a feeling Mahomes will test Ramon early and very often. He may get burned once or twice, but he'll probably find a way to get an interception.
Special Teams: ALERT! NO KICKER THIS WEEK. I think it's finally the week Barry breaks a couple giant returns, and BPS will chant his name.
O - Patrick Mahomes | D - Jah'Shawn Johnson | S - Clayton Hatfield
Offense: This is an easy pick, he'll throw the ball 90 or so times and put up massive numbers. Mahomes is their offense, so there's no reason to pick someone else.
Defense: First off, what a name. The sophomore DB has 50 tackles on the year, and had 11 last week against UT. It's so hard to pick a player to have a good game on an defense that gives up over 530 yards a game. So let's hope this one works.
Special Teams: Nothing new, the opposing kicker. Move along.