STILLWATER, Okla. — Oklahoma State football completes its regular-season non-conference schedule with a matchup against FCS opponent Arkansas-Pine Bluff on Saturday night inside Boone Pickens Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 6 p.m. CT and will stream on Big 12 Now/ESPN+. Both teams enter the game with a 2-0 record, but the Golden Lions have yet to play an NCAA Division I school — let alone a nationally ranked Power Five program.
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The Cowboys are a perfect 13-0 against FCS schools since head coach Mike Gundy took over in 2005. Oklahoma State has won those games by an average margin of 38.6 points. The widest spread in points came in a 84-0 beatdown against Savannah State in 2012.
There is no betting info available for Oklahoma State vs. Arkansas-Pine Bluff at Caesars Sportsbook. Here is a look at the best- and worst-case scenarios for the Cowboys on Saturday, as well as a final score prediction.
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Mike Gundy said it on Monday, he wants to get his starters off the field and out of the game as quick as possible against Arkansas-Pine Bluff. Once the score is out of reach for the Golden Lions, Oklahoma State will put its underclassmen and walk-ons in. Not only would this give some new players a chance to gain experience and play in front of a large crowd, it would also provided the Cowboys’ starters and veterans even more time to rest up and get healthy before the start of Big 12 action in two weeks.
Oklahoma State does not have a bye week during the conference season. That means a grueling nine-week stretch awaits the Cowboys starting on Oct. 1 when the Pokes open the Big 12 slate at Baylor in a rematch of last year’s conference title game.
So, what’s the best-case scenario against Arkansas-Pine Bluff? Quarterback Spencer Sanders and the Cowboys’ offense score early and often in the opening quarter to build a comfortable lead. The defensive front gets pressure on Golden Lions’ quarterback Skylar Perry and forces a turnover or two. After halftime, The B Team is in for Oklahoma State as fans get a chance to see some new faces for the first time.
Oklahoma State is not losing this game. While Arkansas-Pine Bluff does have some talented players, it is not an FCS power that can match the Cowboys’ speed. However, that does not mean the Pokes won’t come away from this game disappointed in the final result.
It is no secret the Oklahoma State defense is still working out some kinks in the back seven, specifically when it comes to communication. First-year coordinator Derek Mason and the players have made that clear. This is the final chance for the Cowboys to correct those mistakes in an actual game before the start of the Big 12 schedule. As for the offense, Oklahoma State was hitting on all cylinders in the opener against Central Michigan, but took a small step back last week versus Arizona State. Was that simply because of stronger competition, or was that a sign of potential struggles to come?
Worst-case scenario on Saturday is the defense allows a handful of big plays and the Golden Lions find the end zone a few times with quarterback Skylar Perry and running back Kayvon Britten leading the attack. Offensively, Oklahoma State gets too conservative and fails to establish any rhythm. A turnover gives Arkansas-Pine Bluff an extra possession with a short field.
MONEY LINE: N/a
SCORE PREDICTION: Oklahoma State 63, Arkansas-Pine Bluff 7
GoPokes247.com Record in 2022: 4-2-0
No. 8 OKLAHOMA STATE (2-0, 0-0 Big 12) vs. ARKANSAS-PINE BLUFF (2-0, 0-0 SWAC)
DATE: Saturday, Sept. 17
TIME: 6 p.m. (CT)
SITE: Stillwater, Oklahoma
STADIUM: Boone Pickens Stadium (55,509)
STREAM: Big 12 Now on ESPN+
STREAM CREW: Pete Sousa (play-by-play), Chad Brown (analyst)
OSU RADIO: Cowboy Radio Network (Dave Hunziker, John Holcomb, Robert Allen)
INTERNET RADIO: The Varsity Network
LIVE STATS: okstate.com
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