It's a little more pleasant this week with the folks from Stillwater, and they are definitely wearing the right colors for Halloween. What else can we learn about the Cowboys before they come to town?
VTM: Oklahoma State has to be the quietest undefeated team in the country... ever. Is OSU liking flying under the radar, or do they wish they were more in the spotlight for their start?
CRFF: They're definitely flying under the radar. I know why and sort of understand, though. Narrow wins against KSU, UT and WVU, none of which are great teams, are the best the team has accomplished thus far. The players seem to know they're under the radar and are completely fine with that.
VTM: To be fair, OSU has gotten some help earlier in the year, but it does seem that they are getting stronger as the season goes. Despite the undefeated record, how would you rate the overall play so far?
CRFF: If I was a football "teacher" I'd give it a 85 of 100 (B). The defense has been stellar and when rolling, so has the offense. However, the offense is inconsistent thanks to the lack of running game. I think this team has the potential to finish undefeated, but it's all about if that run game can get started.
VTM: It seems Coach Gundy has gone with a two QB system in Mason Rudolph and JW Walsh. What are their respective roles in the offense and what can we expect from each of them on Saturday?
CRFF: It's essentially Rudolph doing all the work and Walsh getting the stats. Mason can lead a team to the red zone, and I'm confident he can score once there. However, it's been pretty much a 100 percent (not actually 100, but pretty damn close), success rate when Walsh does come in. He brings another facet to the offense. Rudolph can run if forced, Walsh will run because he can and he's not the easiest to be taken down.
VTM: OSU's running backs haven't really been a factor so far this season. After seeing the run-game issues Tech had against OU last week, do you expect more of an emphasis on attacking Tech on the ground, or stick with what works?
CRFF: Oh they're going to attack the weakness that is Tech rush defense. Gundy has stuck with the run all year, and it's been ugly. However, I've heard nothing great about the front seven in Lubbock and think the run game will work better than it has all year. However, I don't think it'll be to the level that OU was able to do last week.
VTM: Give us a couple of players to keep an eye on this Saturday.
CRFF: Ogbah is an obvious one. I'll say Jimmy Bean, the other DE that has anchored the other side of Ogbah very well. You've got Kevin Peterson who can shut down about anyone in the Big 12 level and Jordan Sterns who's going to hit the heck out of anyone in his general area.
On offense, watch for Washington. He's made some big catches in his career and I think he's going to be a threat this week.
VTM: Keys to the game for OSU?
CRFF: Mason Rudolph needs to not turn it over. He's done that more on the road then at home. However, that's without a run game. If the run game can get started to take the pressure off of Rudolph and the team scores more than 35, I'm comfortable that OSU can win. However, if we see it stalling, you'll see the defense on the field more and Mahomes can take advantage of a tired defense.
VTM: Tech gets the upset if...?
CRFF: As mentioned above, if the run game stalls. I think if you force Rudolph to carry the team alone, you'll see a game like WVU, where Rudolph threw multiple interceptions and needed a lot of defensive help to win. However, the luck runs out and that would be a tech win.
VTM: Your prediction for the game?
CRFF: I'm taking OSU. I know, it's not that big of a surprise coming from the guy at CRFF. However, I don't always pick them. I just don't know that this OSU offense can be held to under 35 by a pretty porous Tech defense. I know someone who was an "assistant coach" for a few days in Lubbock this summer and he said that front seven was one of the worst he's ever seen. I'm not sure how true that is, but the guy was a 13-year NFL nose guard. I think the run game gets started just enough and I'm taking OSU 36 TT 28. However, I do think you all finish with eight wins.