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Preview: Oklahoma State vs. Kansas State

The Cowboys are rolling. Can they keep up their good form against the Fightin’ Bill Snyders.

Texas v Oklahoma State Photo by Brett Deering/Getty Images

When: Saturday, November 5th, 2:30pm CST

Where: Bill Snyder Family Football Stadium (Manhattan, KS)

Watch: ABC, ESPN 2 (depending on market)

Listen: Cowboy Radio Network

Oklahoma State University vs. Kansas State University

After losing to Baylor in the conference opener, Oklahoma State has won the last four games, and look to extend the streak to five by taking down Kansas State. Kansas State has squeaked by Texas and Iowa State in their past two games, and look to put the big Oklahoma loss far in their rearview mirror.

In last season’s matchup, the Cowboys came away with a victory at home, 36-34. Mason Rudolph was BUSY, as he went 34/55, with 437 yards and 3 touchdowns. Marcell Ateman and James Washington each went over 100 receiving yards, and our leading rusher was **drumroll**...... Raymond Taylor with 35 yards. Woof. Despite Rudolph’s big game, KSU gave us a fight per usual, and a field goal by Ben Grogan was needed in the end to secure a win.

Important Note: We haven’t won in Manhattan, KS since 2010.

What to watch for: Oklahoma State

NCAA Football: West Virginia at Oklahoma State Rob Ferguson-USA TODAY Sports
  • Oklahoma State needs a big game from their QB. Similarly to our last matchup against WVU, we are facing one of the top tier defenses in the Big 12. However, where WVU ranked really well against the pass, Kansas State is more stout against the run. This spells a rough go for Justice Hill and Chris Carson. Oklahoma State relied on Rudolph last season, and they may need to copy that gameplan.
  • Keep up the takeaways. The Oklahoma State defense has been great at taking the ball away from opposing offenses. It’s something they really focus on, and it shows. T7th on fumble recoveries, and T22nd on interceptions. Key takeaways have been vital in Oklahoma State’s success, and a few turnovers will be needed to defeat KSU.

What to watch for: Kansas State

NCAA Football: Kansas State at Iowa State Reese Strickland-USA TODAY Sports
  • Jesse Ertz through the air, Jesse Ertz on the ground. One thing we have come to expect from Bill Snyder’s quarterbacks over the past few years is a high IQ, and the ability to tuck the ball and run. Jesse Ertz is exactly those two things.

Ertz Passing: 55.7% / 1,078 yards / 7 TDs / 3 INTs

Ertz Running: 5.9 yard avg. attempt/ 477 yards / 6 TDs

  • Runningback by committee. A fantasy football owner’s worst nightmare, but it seems to work out for Kansas State. It’s possible that we could see Charles Jones, Justin Silmon, Dalvin Warmack and Alex Barnes all in the KSU backfield at different times during the game. Charles Jones seems to be the everydown back, but Bill Snyder has admitted that he is open to go with the hot hand (whoever that may be).
  • Rushing Defense is top notch. This Kansas State defense is really tough to run the ball against. Kansas State is 19th in yards allowed per attempt, with 3.3 yards, and ranked 5th in total rushing yards per game, only giving up 102.3 yards. Runningback Justice Hill has been important to the Oklahoma State offense, but don’t expect a huge game from the freshman due to this monstrous defense.

Oklahoma State will win if...

They continue to win turnover battles. Easy as that.

Kansas State will win if...

Oklahoma State can’t contain the K-State rushing attack. With so many options and weapons in the backfield and at quarterback, Kansas State is able to really put it on the Cowboys defense.

Stats

Mason Rudolph - 2532 yards / 17 TDs / 2 INTs

James Washington - 43 rec / 857 yards / 6 TDs

Jalen McCleskey - 49 rec / 602 yards / 5 TDs

Justice Hill - 619 yards / 4 TDs

Jesse Ertz - (passing) 1078 yards / 7 TDs / 3 INTs

Dominique Heath - 35 rec / 358 yards / 3 TDs

Charles Jones - 439 yards / 2 TDs

Prediction

After going against my gut and betting against the Cowboys last week, I’m deciding to go with what I feel this week... and I’m feeling a Cowboys victory in Manhattan!

OSU -- 36 KSU -- 30