October 12, 2012
Such a roller-coaster ride of a season thus far, wouldn't you agree? I won't beat a dead horse on recounting the slings and arrows of what were the Arizona and Texas games, frankly because we've seen and heard enough of that from local sports talk radio and on The Corral, not to mention our Sooner brethren. Even so, Oklahoma State's stumbling out to a 2-2 start in a Big 12 conference that is truly more wide open than it has been in some time isn't a call for doom and gloom, unless we're talking about speed packages that the defensive play-calling has embraced up to this point.
We've got some other reasons to be excited…and not all of them are stemming from Orange Country, USA. Josh Cooper, Mustang's favorite son and former OSU Cowboys chain mover, is likely to get the nod to start in his first career NFL game this weekend when the 3-2 Cincinnati Bengals roll into Cuyahoga County in an AFC North battle for Ohio. Cooper's Cleveland Browns squad is a less than impressive 0-5 so far (including a 34-27 squeaker win for the Bengals in the first meeting of these two teams), but the record is not entirely revealing of the progress this team has made since installing another one of Cooper's friends from his Stillwater days: first-round pick, quarterback Brandon Weeden.
Edmond native Weeden has governed the anemic Browns offense to the 14th-rated passing attack in the NFL despite a 5:9 touchdown-to-interception ratio…and frankly there are 4 of those that I recall being largely due to his receivers coming down with multiple cases of skillet hands, so it's tough to sneer at him and the Brownies as the same old Browns. Even a background in professional baseball is not enough to prepare anyone for the super-freaks that suit up in an NFL team uniform every Sunday, and Weeden has spent enough time on his back through five weeks to know that there is a learning curve (his Twitter feed is a great indicator that he knows that he and his teammates have ample room to grow).
The silver lining for us? Two Oklahoma State football legacies have a shot to recapture some of their Boone Pickens Stadium glory and put it on display at 12PM Central on Sunday, October 14th. I don't think Cooper and Weeden will be the heroes of the day necessarily, but they're bound to give us as Pokes fans something to cheer about…well, that and a blowout win 'lock' over the University of Kansas this weekend.
The Browns game will be broadcast regionally on CBS and on DirecTV's NFL Sunday Ticket on channel 708; you can also hear the Cleveland Browns radio broadcast on Sirius Radio on channel 91.