It’s week 11 for Oklahoma State meaning there are only four more MVP Drafts left to go (TCU, bye week, OU, Bowl Game). It’s time to lock in and get serious about our picks!
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 check out where the leaderboard stands after week 10:
Cade - 31 points
Dustin - 28 points
Phillip - 27 points
Joel - 25 points
Christopher/Kyle - 24 points
Cade continues to push his lead, as Dustin climbs into second place behind a five point week! With that, let’s get to the picks:
O - Chris Carson | D - Jordan Burton | ST - Zach Sinor
Offense: The Cowboys’ improving run game, and reliance on Carson in red zone situations has me sticking with him here. I know I should pick Rudolph because he’s been playing lights out. However, I think Gundy & Co. are going to try and play this game similar to the one against Baylor and keep TCU off the field. I think Hill will get more carries, but Carson could get more TDs.
Defense: I’m tired of trying to be clever. I’m going with the guy that produces each and every week. Kenny Hill has thrown 10 interceptions this season. I have a feeling Burton might snag one. I know he’ll get some tackles and (probably) a couple TFLs.
Special Teams: TCU has a better defense than Tech, so I expect a few more punts this game. On the road, I’m going with the leg I trust the most on the team. That belongs to Sinor.
O - Kyle Hicks | D - Travin Howard | ST - KaVontae Turpin.
Offense: I’m really hoping Hill looks more like he did earlier in the season in this game and plays. So I’m going to go with leading rusher Kyle Hicks who is averaging 6.1 yards a carry. It’s a gamble not to pick Hill; he’s a QB who can run, which has given OSU problems all season. I think if Hicks has the better day for TCU, OSU wins.
Defense: The dude has 100 tackles on the season... with three games still to play. That’s ridiculous. I would be a fool not to go with him.
Special Teams: This was a tough pick. None of their return men have done much and neither of their kickers have been great on field goals. Turpin at least returns punts and kickoffs and has TCU’s only return TD this season. I’ll gamble and go with him. How else am I going to catch up to Cade?
O - Mason Rudolph | D - Vincent Taylor | ST - Ben Grogan
Offense: Gotta ride the hot hand this week. Rudolph is playing the best football of his career, and I think he is the heartbeat of this team right now. If he can continue on this run that he is on, I think OSU grabs a win on Saturday.
Defense: I’ll take Vincent Taylor this week. It’s an off-the-wall pick for me because I think I’ve picked a defensive back or linebacker every week. I’m taking Taylor because he has shown the ability to single handedly stop a play in its’ tracks. That’s going to be important against the rushing attack that TCU possesses.
Special Teams: I actually wobbled on this. While I think Zach Sinor is going to play an important role in this, I think this game is going to be very close and could be decided by a couple field goals or less. Plus, I’ve got a 3 point lead. Can’t blow a 3 point lead in 2016.
O - Kyle Hicks | D - Ranthony Texada | ST - Kavontae Turpin
Offense: I nearly went with a double shot of Kavontae Turpin, but I really like Kyle Hicks’ game. I think TCU is able to run the ball on Saturday and they’ll do that behind Hicks. I also don’t trust Kenny Hill’s ability to not turn the ball over.
Defense: A veteran corner for the Horned Frogs, I like Texada’s ability to make up ground in the open field. He’ll most likely be shadowing James Washington and I expect that matchup to be a fun one.
Special Teams: Kavontae Turpin is basically what Benjamin Franklin discovered on that fateful night in the late 1700’s. If you could gather all of the electricity he produces, I think you could power Amon G. Carter stadium for a couple quarters. He’s incredible and is probably the most explosive player in the Big 12. I hope he doesn’t, but I expect him to make a play that leaves his mark on the game.
O - Mason Rudolph | D - Jordan Sterns | ST - Ben Grogan
Offense: TCU is middle of the pack this year in the Big 12 in passing defense. They've forced quite a few turnovers, but with how well Mason has been playing lately, he's my choice here. I think he has another big day... and I think we hear even more NFL talk for QB1. Don't listen to them Mason, please...
Defense: He had a solid game last week against Tech, and I haven't picked #13 in a while. He's leading the team in total tackles, solo tackles, tied for the lead in interceptions and has 3 passes defended to go along with 3.5 tackles for loss. I hate to be a Stats Guy, but that's impressive.
Special Teams: I don't want to pick Sinor because I don't want him to do well... because I don't want OSU to punt at all this game. So I'll take Grogan. That's my reasoning.
O - Kenny Hill | D - Nick Orr | ST - Kavonte Turpin
Offense: Hill has had some big games this year, throwing for over 400 yards 3 times. He's been able to make plays with his feet scoring 7 rushing touchdowns so far this season. The Cowboy passing defense has looked slightly improved as of late, but they still have given up a lot of yards and a lot of touchdowns to opposing quarterbacks. I think Kenny Trill is the right pick here.
Defense: TCU's zone looks on defense allow their defense backs to make plays. Nick Orr has done that this season with 4 interceptions and five passes defended. He seems to be in the right place at the right time a lot this season, and that's why he is my pick.
Special Teams: Turpin has been banged up this season, but he is explosive in the return game. The 5'9 speedster has two career punt return touchdowns and is always dangerous when he has the ball in his hands. I hope he doesn't make any plays on special teams, but I guess he's my pick here.
O - Mason Rudolph | D - Jordan Sterns | S - Ben Grogan
Offense: The TCU defense is solid across the board, but it's much tougher against the run than it is against the pass. I do fully expect Gundy and Yurcich to attempt to establish and maintain a balance, but the Frogs are only giving up 3.3 yards per carry. Rudolph has been on a tear, and rebounded impressively from a difficult third quarter in his last road outing, so I'm hoping he carries that momentum into Ft. Worth.
Defense: TCU's offense has seemingly caught fire at the worst possible time. The Horned Frogs can run it and throw it and are definitely capable of putting up big numbers. The biggest weakness might be Kenny Hill's tendency to throw it to the other team. I always expect Sterns to be busy and rack up the tackles, but if he can snag an errant pass, it might just be the difference in the game.
Special Teams: While the TCU defense is dead last in the conference in red zone defense, allowing scores on 91.9% of opponent red zone possessions, the Horned Frogs force field goal attempts on over 40% of those possessions, which is second only to West Virginia. For comparison, most teams in the conference are around 25%. So TCU is very good at forcing FGs once opponents are in red zone. Enter Ben Grogan.
O - Kyle Hicks | D - Travin Howard S - KaVontae Turpin
Offense: Hicks is third in the conference in rushing yards per game and fifth in all purpose yards. TCU has a lot of weapons, but Hicks is what makes them go. The way the OSU defense has (not) defended the run of late, Hicks will likely find plenty of running room on Saturday. And if not, he's a factor in the passing game as well, hauling in 343 receiving yards so far this season.
Defense: TCU has three of the top seven individual sack totals in the Big 12. And none of those three guys are Travin Howard. I do think Rudolph will be harassed on Saturday, but sacks are fickle and unpredictable. You know what's not fickle and unpredictable? Travin Howard's tackles. The dude has 100 of them and leads the conference by 23. That kind of insane production and consistency makes him an easy pick.
Special Teams: Turpin is an electric playmaker who, of course, is getting healthy just in time to play the Pokes. He also happens to be on a team with struggling kicker and a mediocre punter, so even with OSU's usually good kick coverage and Sinor's ability to neutralize threats in the punt return game, Turpin is still the most likely Frog to impact the game on special teams.
O - Justice Hill | D - Vincent Taylor | S - Zach Sinor
Offense: I think Justice adds to his 100 yard performance this week. He's taken a lot of pressure off of Rudolph this year. I think Rudolph will in turn have a big game as well, but I'll go with Hill here.
Defense: Taylor is going to continue to make his case for Big 12 DPOTY. He'll need to be the big run stopper this week against a good running back in Kyle Hicks, as well as getting after Kenny Trill in the backfield.
Special Teams: Sinor's ability to flip the field is too easy not to take.
O - Kyle Hicks | D - Nick Orr | S - Brandon Hatfield
Offense: I thought about taking Kenny here, but he's been too inconsistent this year. Hicks has been a constant and I'll go with the Horned Frogs leading rusher.
Defense: Orr was TCU's leading tackler in their beat down for Baylor 2 weekends ago. I'll look for him to build off of that and be a force this week.
Special Teams: The usual here, hopefully another kicker named Hatfield will get me a point.