Fearless Picks: West Virginia Mountaineers – Oklahoma State Cowboys

Fearless Picks: West Virginia Mountaineers – Oklahoma State Cowboys


Jane maintained her lead, but Bill moved up after missing the TCU final score by just eight points in a week where every member of the panel got back on the winning track. This week, our group sees WVU success, but with a lot of points flying around on the north-central plains of Oklahoma.


Jane Donovan

Last Week: W      Season Record: 8-1      Point Differential: 155

Even if I sound like a broken record, I’m going to repeat what I said last week: focus, focus, focus. The fan base is already looking forward to Oklahoma on Black Friday, but the Mountaineers need to take care of business with Okie State first. The Cowboys’ loss to their cross-state rivals has either angered them or broken their spirits. I’m guessing we’ll figure out which by 4:00 p.m. Saturday. I vote for broken.

West Virginia 35-21


Bill Gleason

Last Week: W      Season Record: 8-1      Point Differential: 161

The third leg of the treacherous November stretch drive brings us to Mulletville, Okla., where an inconsistent, yet talented bunch of Cowboys await the Mountaineers. Motivation should not be a factor, as every goal a team has to start the season is still right in front of Dana Holgorsen’s best-looking team in his tenure. The ONLY goal that is out of WVU control is the four-team playoff. And, honestly, when is that ever in anyone’s control not named Alabama?

OSU averages 511 yards per game (11th in the country) and Mike Gundy announced that star tailback Justice Hill is good to go this weekend. WVU averages 496.3 yards per game (12th in the country) and appears relatively healthy, except for maybe a dinged up Marcus Sims who continues to gut it out and make plays, and Dylan Tonkery, who is battling a groin injury.

WVU brings the #37 total offense (354.2 ypg) while OSU brings the #93 total defense (426.9 ypg). WVU is #24 in scoring defense (20.9), while State is #94 at 31.7 ppg. WVU is 10th in scoring offense (40.9) while OSU is 13th at 39.2. I’m going with the over, and the Mountaineers.

West Virginia 48-38


Chris Richardson

Last Week: W      Season Record: 8-1      Point Differential: 171

Oklahoma State has been a real Jekyll and Hyde haven’t they? At times they’ve looked like the explosive top of the league contender we’re all used to seeing. At other times they’ve looked like a young, inexperienced team trying to find its way. Which one shows up this week in Stillwater? By contrast, WVU appears to have righted its ship in the past few weeks after its lone loss. Will Grier is playing arguably the best football of his career, the running game has been revived, and the defense was back to its old dominant self last weekend. I’ll stick with the Mountaineers in this one. This team has proven itself to be very mature and in the moment.

West Virginia 45-37


Jeff Cobb

Last Week: W      Season Record: 8-1      Point Differential: 171

This is turning into a special season for the Mountaineers. But next to the Oklahoma Sooners, the Cowboys of Oklahoma State have been the Big 12 team which has been the hardest to handle for WVU. Since joining the league in 2012, West Virginia is a pedestrian 2-3 against OSU, including losing the last three in a row. Turning it around might come down to turnovers. In its only win in the cozy confines of T. Boone Pickens Stadium, West Virginia’s defense turned an interception into a pick six en route to 34-10 victory in 2014. Can the defense come up big? I think they’re getting healthy at the right moment, with the linebacking corps now as deep as the defensive line, along with a healthy rotation of cornerbacks and safeties. This is a very important game. Will WVU have enough to defeat OSU and stifle the wall-pounding paddle crew?

West Virginia 41-35


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Brian Jolliff

Last Week: W      Season Record: 8-1      Point Differential: 173

When these two teams play you can throw out the records, the spread, and where they are in the polls you can also look forward to a shootout and high-scoring contest. I expect that is exactly what will happen this Saturday in Stillwater as the 8-1 Mountaineers take to the road for their final regular season away game. Both quarterbacks are playing at a high level this season, but the difference in the offenses between these two teams is how those yards and points are distributed among the receivers and the backfields. WVU has spread the yardage and scores out to a good stable of players. Oklahoma State has more defined leaders in the receiving and running game. This game will come down to WVU’s defense and being able to key on those differences and get an extra stop or two, which will be the deciding factor.

West Virginia 48-45


Greg Hunter

Last Week: W      Season Record: 7-2      Point Differential: 163

If not for Oklahoma State’s impressive performance in defeating Texas, the confidence level in a Mountaineer victory in Stillwater would be high. But that OSU win, coupled with West Virginia’s shaky road performance at Iowa State, gives an indication that while WVU has generally been very good and OSU average at best, the unexpected can happen. In the end, though, the Mountaineers are the better team, and the better team wins … usually.

West Virginia 42-35


Jonathan Martin

Last Week: W      Season Record: 7-2      Point Differential: 171

Don’t pay attention to Oklahoma State’s 5-5 record. They are much better than that .500 mark indicates. Being on the road in a hostile environment screams flashbacks to the Iowa State debacle for WVU.

However, this West Virginia team seems focused on the task at hand. I don’t expect it to be looking ahead to Oklahoma. The offense continues to roll and the defense does just enough.

West Virginia 42-35


Andy Easton

Last Week: W      Season Record: 6-3      Point Differential: 162

Oklahoma State has absolutely owned WVU for the last three seasons. Last year QB Will Grier threw four interceptions, the WVU ground game was held to 62 yards and Bill Kinney was the team MVP, punting five times for 218 yards.

Can the Mountaineers get a little redemption with a possible Big 12 and College Football Playoff berth on the line? You betcha! WVU and Oklahoma State before have talented offenses but the Mountaineers are better on defense and special teams, which should mean victory at T. Boone Pickens Stadium on Saturday.

West Virginia 45-35


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