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The Oklahoma State MVP Draft: Bowl Week - Colorado

The last round is finally here.

NCAA Football: Oklahoma State at Oklahoma Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

It’s the final round of the inaugural MVP Draft. It’s been a long and exciting season. Oklahoma State takes on Colorado tonight in the Alamo Bowl. The match-up of ranked teams should make for a great game.

Before we get to the picks, let’s take a look at the rules (in case you don’t know what they are by now): 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 standings heading into the final week.

Cade - 34 points
Christopher/Kyle - 34 points
Dustin - 34 points
Phillip - 33 points
Joel - 29 points

So, let’s get to the final picks of the season.

Phillip

Oklahoma State

O - Mason Rudoloph | D - Chad Whitener | ST - Zach Sinor

Offense: I may be overthinking this thing, but I believe in OSU’s passing game. I realize Gundy calls conservative in Bedlam, but he’s never had that problem in bowl games. I expect OSU to do what it didn’t do against OU; throw deep. I believe in Mason Rudolph in that case. I believe in Mason Rudolph in any chance. Also I want to win so I’m not going to pick the same thing as everyone else.

Defense: He’s going to finish the season third in tackles. Colorado’s best player is their running back. I don’t know that Whitener will get the TFLs I love, but I see a double-digit tackle game for him against Colorado.
Special Teams: I actually think this is going to be a good, low scoring game with two defenses that show up to prove themselves. Sinor will get some chances to plant Colorado inside their own 20 (if not worse).

Colorado

O - Phillip Lindsey | D - Jimmie Gilbert | ST - Chris Graham

Offense: He’s got 17 total touchdowns this season. He’s got 1,579 total yards. All of that aside, we have the same first name. Go Phillip! (I don’t want you to win, just get me a point).
Defense: Gilbert leads the team in TFLs (which I love) with 10 12 and forced fumbles with 6. Those are game-changing stats that win points.
Special Teams: I’ll play with the other MVP Draft players and go conservative here and pick Chris Graham. You can call it a cop-out. I call it a winning strategy.

Final Score: 38-34 Colorado

Cade

Oklahoma State

O - Chris Carson | D - Jordan Sterns | ST - Ben Grogan

Offense: Carson has been a beast lately. In his last game for the Pokes, I expect a determined performance on the ground. Given OSU could easily run into troubles throwing the football, I like this pick here.

Defense: It’s his last game at Oklahoma State. One of the emotional leaders for the Cowboys will make his presence known against the Buffs.

Special Teams: No time for shenanigans. Give me the kicker.

Colorado

O - Sefo Liufau | D - Tedric Thompson | ST - Chris Graham

Offense: Liufau likes to use his legs. Historically, that type of quarterback has given Oklahoma State trouble. The fact that he can run but is also no slouch as a passer makes me think he could be on his way to a big game.

Defense: Thompson, much like Jordan Sterns, is a vocal leader of the Buffs secondary which is one of the best in college football. He’s a second string All-American for good reason. He is a ballhawk, with 25 pass break ups and has seven interceptions on the season as well.

Special Teams: See above.

Final Score: Oklahoma State 31-27

Dustin

Oklahoma State

O - Justice Hill | D - Vincent Taylor | ST - Ben Grogan

Offense: Colorado's defense has been solid this season. However, the pass D has been stronger than the run D, and this will be the area that the Cowboys will need to try to exploit. I believe that Hill will cap off his outstanding debut season with a solid performance in San Antonio. If OSU can establish the run game, I think they will head back to Stillwater with a bowl victory.
Defense: Vincent will have a big decision to make after the bowl game. Either way, I'd like to see him come out and have a big game against Colorado. The Buffaloes have two key rushing threats in their quarterback, Sefo Liufau, and running back, Phillip Lindsay. Hopefully Taylor can cause some havoc in the trenches and maybe even force a fumble (or two).
Special Teams:

Colorado

O - Sefo Liufau | D - Tedric Thompson | ST - Chris Graham

Offense: Oklahoma State has struggled this season with dual-threat quarterbacks who can scramble out of the pocket and make a play. Colorado's Liufau fits thats mold perfectly. The Senior quarterback plays tough and isn't afraid to get physical. I could see Liufau having a good game against the OSU secondary and that's why he's my pick for this week.
Defense: Colorado had the best pass defense in the Pac-12 this season and a lot of that is thanks to safety Tedric Thompson. He's had 7 interceptions (yes, 7) and 15 passes defended this season. Mason Rudolph will need to be aware of where Thompson is on the field at all times, because he will be looking to make a big play and swing the momentum in favor of the Buffaloes.
Special Teams: Colorado has used multiple kickers this season after they lost their starter for the season. Most recently it's been Chris Graham, so he's going to be my pick.

Final Score: 34-31 Oklahoma State

Christopher

Oklahoma State

O - Chris Carson | D - Jordan Sterns | ST - Ben Grogan

Offense: Is the Alamo Bowl being played in Boone Pickens Stadium? No? Then my trust in Rudolph drops considerably. I'd love for him to prove me wrong, but when you throw in Colorado's pass defense, which gives up only 182.5 passing yards per game, I just don't think the Pokes win this game riding Rudolph. Instead, I think the running game is going to be huge and I have a hunch that Gundy and Yurcich will put Carson in position to shine in his last game as a Cowboy.
Defense: Speaking of shining in his last game as a Cowboy, I expect Jordan Sterns to show out in San Antonio. He's going to be sorely missed next season, but he has 60 more minutes to be the driving force of this defense. Colorado has a pretty balanced offense, averaging 191.9 yards rushing and 254.4 yards passing on the season. Sterns will have plenty of opportunities to make plays all over the field. I can't wait to watch him ball one more time.
Special Teams: Honestly, it's more just hope than anything else. I hope the guy with potential to score points for OSU is the one with a standout day instead of the guy who only comes on the field when the offense fails. Sinor has been so massive this season and will continue to be, but I'd much rather see Grogan end his career with a great game that helps the Cowboys pull out a win on Thursday.

Colorado

O - Sefo Liufau | D - Kenneth Olugbode | ST - Chris Graham

Offense: When the starting QB is the second leading rusher with nearly 500 yards on the season, you take him. The CU offense flows through Sefo Liufau, who is electric when healthy. He's had time to lick his wounds after the Pac-12 Championship Game, and the Pokes aren't trotting Washington's defense out there for the Alamo Bowl.
Defense: Love me some volume tacklers, and Olugbode is exactly that. He leads the team by a significant margin with his impressive 130 total tackles on the season. He also has two and a half sacks, four tackles for loss, five QB pressures, and three fumble recoveries.
Special Teams: Colorado hasn't really done us any favors after the season-ending injury to Diego Gonzalez. Three Buffaloes have recorded FG attempts and they split field goal and extra point duties just for fun. That being said, Graham gets the majority of FG opportunities and has the best chance to impact the game.

Final Score: 35-31 Oklahoma State

Joel

Oklahoma State

O - Justice Hill | D - Jordan Sterns | S - Zach Sinor

Offense: The Buffaloes have a top 5 pass defense nationally. This will prove to be a tough test for Rudolph and Co. I believe we will see a heavy dose of Justice Hill in this game.
Defense: In his last game as a Cowboy, I expect to see a similar game to what we saw in Bedlam (19 total tackles).
Special Teams: The Buffalo defense is very good, and they'll force Sinor to punt a few times. I think that Sinor's ability to flip the field is amazing, and it will be a big x-factor in this game.

Colorado

O - Phillip Lindsay | D - Chidobe Awuzie | S - Chris Graham

Offense: Lindsay has rushed for 1189 yards on the season, so I believe we will see a heavy dose of him as well. The CU offense relies on the run, and Lindsay is a big part of that.
Defense: Awuzie has been a consistent force on the back line of the Buffalo defense all year. He is a part of a pass defense that is ranked in the Top 5 nationally, so I will look for him to try and make plays against a high octane Cowboy offense.
Special Teams: Well, once again I am taking the kicker...let's see if it works.

Final Score: 30-21 Oklahoma State