Big 12 Sports Articles

Oklahoma’s Rapid Improvement Should be Remembered by CFB Playoff Committee

NCAA Football: Oklahoma State at Oklahoma

There’s no question the Big 12 Conference is on the outside looking in on the College Football Playoff. In fact, many will say the Big 12 is unofficially out of the College Football Playoff conversation after Oklahoma State got smoked by Oklahoma on Saturday night 41-13 to give every Big 12 team at least two losses on the season.

However, is the CFB Playoff committee watching? Did they see the thorough domination of the Pokes in Bedlam on Saturday night (we know Baker Mayfield did)?

I’m not predicting the Oklahoma Sooners will make the College Football Playoff. Way too much needs to break their way and a two-loss team has yet to come close to making the Final Four. But hey, it’s 2020, right?

Oklahoma made a statement in front of the nation on Saturday night and it’s the kind of statement that in a whacky, strange season, might just be worth something.

 

The Sooners nearly doubled the No. 14-ranked Pokes in total yards with 492 to 246. They held Oklahoma State’s rushing attack, led by preseason Heisman contender Chuba Hubbard, to 78 total yards and 2.8 yards per carry. They also held Oklahoma State to 3 of 14 on third downs.

Everything just mentioned was on the defensive side, which is important because this Oklahoma team is playing outstanding on that side of the ball. In fact, this last few games has been the best Oklahoma has looked defensively since Lincoln Riley became head coach four years ago.

Ronnie Perkins’ return from suspension has made an enormous difference as he’s quickly shooting up NFL Draft boards all over the country. On the other side of the ball, Rhamondre Stevenson joining the backfield (also from suspension) has given this team a 250-pound bruiser that has helped lead the rushing attack. That unit was looking for a leader after Kennedy Brooks opted out of the 2020 season. Meantime, QB Spencer Rattler continues to get more comfortable by the game as the redshirt freshman is starting to settle into his role and is looking like the former five-star prospect who came to Norman in the Class of 2019.

The Sooners have games left at West Virginia and home vs. Baylor. The Mountaineers in Morgantown are no easy task, but still, OU is a heavy favorite to end up playing for another Big 12 title in Arlington, TX next month. They’re still the favorite to win the Big 12.

And while the College Football Playoff is admittedly out of reach right now, if things break just right, the Sooners should get a look. They led in both games that they ended up losing (Kansas State, Iowa State) and this Oklahoma team in late November is a very different team than the one that was playing in late September.

In fact, if OU keeps this up, there will be little doubt in my mind they’ll be playing like a Top 4 team in America, the question will be is their “resume” Top 4 worthy?

 

For the stars to align, Alabama, Notre Dame and Ohio State need to win out, Cincinnati and BYU need to drop a game, and the mess that is the Pac-12 needs to stay out of the picture since most of its teams will be lucky to get in six games.

But if we end up in a conversation like that, I hope the College Football Playoff committee had its TVs turned on to watch Oklahoma on Saturday night in Bedlam. It was a beat down and one that should be turning some heads, and should be stored in the memory bank, just incase we find ourselves with chaos in college football come one month from now.

Remember, it’s 2020. So why not?

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