Key Player, Kansas State: Skylar Thompson (QB)
The quarterback position this year for K-State has been nonetheless but a headache. Senior Jesse Ertz had a very strong start to the 2017 season but has been out since late in the Texas game because of a knee-injury. Backups like Alex Delton have also taken his spot. However, after experiencing concussion-like symptoms in their last two games, Skylar Thompson will be taking full responsibility against Oklahoma State.
Key Player, Oklahoma State: Mason Rudolph (QB)
At the surface this will appear as an extremely stock answer. Stop. Before you move on, remember that the running game has produced almost as much, if not more, than the passing game for the Cowboys in recent weeks.
Rudolph put up great numbers against Iowa State. He threw for 376 yards. But he also only had 31 attempts versus 35 team carries for 234 yards also. While having a balanced attack in a score-heavy Big 12 conference is good, the Pokes are best when Mason Rudolph and James Washington are on fire.
Keys to the Game
The keys to Saturday’s upcoming game will be the same for both teams–start early, and finish strong. Tagged by many fans, “the Cardiac Cowboys”, OSU knows what it is like to be in a fair share of close games. But Kansas State is no different. Whichever team can get off to a fast start and, more importantly, keep it that way, will most likely get a win.
Prediction: Oklahoma State, 38-21 in Regulation
The Big 12 is a high scoring, offense-heavy conference, and as we have all seen this season, this should keep this game close for a long time. But a single digit final score is not foreseeable simply because Oklahoma State should have so much more motivation and “things to play for” than the Wildcats at this point in the year. A couple early Oklahoma State mistakes (which they struggle with) will keep Kansas State in the game, but the Pokes should most likely come out on the winning side.