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Four Thoughts Ahead of OSU’s Big 12 Championship Game against Texas

Boynton and OSU’s stock continuing to rise ahead of March Madness.



[Photo via Courtney Bay/Oklahoma State Athletics]

After besting the 4 seed Mountaineers in the quarterfinals on Thursday, OSU earned a huge win, taking down the once-beaten top-seeded Baylor Bears on Friday night.

Now the Pokes are just one win away from their first Big 12 Tournament title in 16 years and an exciting launch pad into the NCAA Tournament.

Here are four things to ponder as we wait for OSU’s conference title game against Texas.

1. The Horns Will Be Rested

At least they’ll be more rested.

Oklahoma State had to beat the Nos. 10 and 2 teams in the nation in consecutive days to get to the conference title game, but the Longhorns only had a practice on Friday.

Kansas had to bow out of the conference tournament because of a positive COVID test, so Shaka Smart’s Longhorns got the night off and a bye instead of their originally scheduled matchup against the Jayhawks at 8:30 p.m. UT had its own nail-biter against Texas Tech late on Thursday night, and no one is 100 percent fresh in March, but the ‘Horns should definitely be the more-rested squad come tipoff.

We’ll see how much of a difference that actually makes in the title round, or if OSU is so juiced, the Pokes can run on straight adrenaline.

2. An Historic Streak

There are too many significant stats and numbers to keep track of over the last month between Cade’s storied season, the Cowboys finish and this run through Kansas City, but this one really sticks out.

And they might make it seven in 20 on Saturday.

Which brings us to …

3. Appreciation for Mike Boynton

On Friday, Cade Cunningham made a clear statement about who should have been the Big 12 Player of the Year (to a fan base that grumbled at his appointment on Twitter just last week). But his head coach made a statement, as well.

You won’t hear me gripe that Scott Drew is undeserving of his Big 12 Coach of the Year honor, but Mike Boynton had one hell of a case — and it’s getting more impressive by the win. If they voted for such awards after the conference tournament, he very well could have won it.

Two years ago OSU lost 20 games, and now Boynton has the Cowboys at 20-7 on the verge of a conference tournament crown and as a trendy Final Four pick.

“It all starts with the head guy, Coach Mike,” said Cunningham after Friday night’s win. “He puts so much confidence in all of us as players, and just our whole staff, they prepared us for this moment.”

To quote our fearless leader, Marshall Scott, “Pay the man before someone else does.”

4. Tourney Talk

After toppling the Big 12 regular season champs, the Cowboys are now a 2 seed in ESPN bracketologist Joe Lunardi’s latest projection. OSU is No. 8 overall in the field by his projection, but Joey Brackets says the Cowboys may need to leave Kansas City with some hardware in order to stay in that envious spot.

A 2’s highest-seeded path to the Final Four goes like this: 15, 7, 3, 1. Lunardi’s current 1 seeds are Gonzaga, Baylor, Michigan and Illinois. OSU just beat Baylor and, as of right now, I’m not sure any team should strike fear in the heart of Mike Boynton. He’s going to have the best player on the floor, and his team is athletic, aggressive and is, most importantly, as confident as any in the field.

By the way, a win over a certain one of those top seeds might just shut down this website, The Chamber and all of OSU Twitter like an electromagnetic pulse.

And what a matchup that would be.

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