Posted: Jan 2, 2014 2:47 PM by Nick Thompson, KOMU 8 Reporter
Updated: Jan 2, 2014 7:11 PM
STILLWATER, Okla. - Like the Missouri Tigers, the Oklahoma State Cowboys were ranked in the top ten for a large portion of the 2013 season and were one loss away from a probable Bowl Championship Series (BCS) berth.
After losing to hated rival Oklahoma 33-24 in Stillwater in the season finale, the Cowboys were invited to face Missouri in the Cotton Bowl Classic and Oklahoma State will make its fourth all-time appearance in the game.
Taylor Miller, the media relations coordinator for Oklahoma State's renowned wrestling program, is a recent strategic communication graduate. She told KOMU 8 News that Cowboy's fans are excited to see Missouri again.
"When they left they were a tough opponent so I think it's going to be exciting to see them again and to see how they've developed now that they're in the SEC," Miller said. "There is a sense of familiarity there but then there is also a sense of what are they going to bring."
Although Oklahoma State's men's and women's basketball teams have home games in the next few days, Miller said most of the athletic offices were empty Thursday because almost all of the staff took off for the Dallas area for the Cotton Bowl.
Although Oklahoma State is glad to be back at the Cotton Bowl, Cowboys fans ponder what could have been. Oklahoma State drilled eventual Big 12 champion Baylor 49-17 during the regular season and had a 10-1 record going into the game against Oklahoma, a game known as the "Bedlam" game.
"You have people who say I don't care what happens this season as long as we beat OU," Miller said. "The other side, they just want to beat us."
In 2011, with the Big 12 championship and a trip to a BCS Bowl on the line, Oklahoma State defeated Oklahoma 44-10 and earned a trip to the 2012 Fiesta Bowl. The Cowboys went on to defeat Stanford 41-38 in the first-ever BCS appearance for the Cowboys.
Because the Sooners defeated the Cowboys, Oklahoma State's rival will play Alabama Thursday night in the Sugar Bowl, a BCS game.
Oklahoma State's media relations staff told KOMU 8 News the school is ready to see the new playoff system the NCAA will start using next season for football. The staff said the committee selection and playoff format works well in other NCAA Division I,II and III sports.
Starting next year, a selection committee will pick four top teams and will give them the opportunity to play for a national title. The teams will be paired in two semifinal matchups and the winner of those games will play in a final national title game. The semifinals will rotate between the Sugar Bowl, Chick-Fil-A Bowl, Fiesta Bowl, Rose Bowl, Orange Bowl and Cotton Bowl. Cities will compete to host the national championship final.
The four other bowl games that are not part of the championship bracket each year will host eight hand-picked teams and the selection committee will set up the match-ups.
The committee will weigh factors like strength of schedule, head-to-head records, just as they do with the men's basketball selection process.
The AP poll and computer rankings will not be used next year. There will also not be a limit on the number of teams that can be picked from one conference.
Currently, the BCS can only take two teams from one conference. The BCS chose Auburn and Alabama from the SEC this year and Oklahoma and Baylor from the Big 12.
If this system had been used this year, the selection committee could have chosen two loss Oklahoma State and Missouri for the top-tier bowls.
The Oklahoma State media relations staff told KOMU 8 News the new system could take a lot of the politicking out of the bowl selection process.