OSU football: Projecting the Cowboys' bowl possibilities
STILLWATER — Oklahoma State is just over a week away from knowing its bowl destination, and the Cowboys can help their case with a win on Saturday.
OSU visits McLane Stadium in Waco, Texas, for a 6 p.m. kickoff against Baylor on Saturday to conclude the regular season.
The Cowboys’ bowl possibilities will be impacted by the result on Saturday night, as well as the final College Football Playoff rankings after the conference championship games have been played.
Assuming the Big 12 doesn’t get a team in the top four for the playoffs, it is still possible the conference earns two bids to New Year’s Six bowls. That would move everyone in the Big 12 up one peg in the selection process.
If the conference ends the season with only one team in a New Year’s Six bowl, the loser of the Big 12 title game likely heads to the Alamo Bowl, and everyone else falls in line from there.
After the New Year’s Six bowls, the Big 12 is tied into — in order of selection — the Alamo Bowl, Cheez-It (formerly Camping World) Bowl, Texas Bowl, Liberty Bowl, Guaranteed Rate (formerly Cheez-It) Bowl and First Responders Bowl.
Here’s a look at the most likely landing spots for Oklahoma State:
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Date and location: Dec. 31 in Houston
Chance of going: 45%
The situation: OSU was there last year, and in normal times, a bowl game would avoid bringing a team back for a second straight year. But these aren’t normal times, and with relatively no fan base to worry about disappointing, the bowl game will be seeking its best possible matchup for television eyeballs. The potential SEC opponents are a wide-ranging group, including the likes of Arkansas, Kentucky or Mississippi State.
Date and location: Dec. 31 in Memphis
Chance of going: 30%
The situation: If OSU loses on Saturday, and the Big 12 gets only one New Year’s Six game, this could be where the Cowboys slot in. Again, the opponent would be from a wide-ranging group of SEC teams.
Date and location: Dec. 29 in Orlando
Chance of going: 20%
The situation: A couple of things would have to happen for the Pokes to end up here. First, a win on Saturday. Then the Big 12 would need to get two New Year’s Six spots. That would likely lead the Alamo Bowl to pick Texas, and OSU would be next in line.
Date and location: Dec. 29 in San Antonio
Chance of going: 3%
The situation: The only scenario to get OSU to here would be the same occurrences mentioned above for the Cheez-It Bowl, except the Alamo Bowl would have to choose OSU over Texas.
Guaranteed Rate Bowl
Date and location: Dec. 26 in Phoenix
Chance of going: 2%
Opponent: Big Ten
The situation: With a loss and only one Big 12 team in a New Year’s Six game, OSU could fall here, but it’s unlikely.
Scott Wright covers OSU athletics, especially football. You can send your story ideas to him at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @ScottWrightOK. Support his work and that of other Oklahoman journalists by purchasing a digital subscription today.