Top 50 teams in 2017: No. 14, Oklahoma State

Top 50 teams in 2017: No. 14, Oklahoma State

Coach: Mike Gundy

2016 record: 10-3

Projected 2017 record: 10-2

Circle the date: Nov. 4 vs. Oklahoma

Bowl trip: Cotton

Why No. 14: On Aug. 12, Gundy turns 50, which we hope won't lead to another tirade. You never know. The coach figures to be happy with the Cowboys, who have a chance to win the Big 12. It should come down to the home game against Oklahoma. Oddly, Bedlam isn't at the end of season. Instead, it will be played in early November. The Cowboys have a great chance to be undefeated at the time, with Baylor and West Virginia the biggest challengers. Quarterback Mason Rudolph threw for 4,000 yards and 28 touchdowns. His favorite target is James Washington, the active leader for career yards. He could top 4,000. Three starters are back on the offensive line. On defense, linebacker Chad Whitener is the leading returning tackler. End Tralund Webber is looking to top last year's six sacks. The Cowboys will be tested in the nonconference with a trip to Pitt.

Last year's ranking: No. 23

Previous rankings: No. 50, Western Kentucky, No. 49 Vanderbilt, No. 48 Syracuse, No. 47 Duke, No. 46 Memphis, No. 45 Arizona State, No. 44 Colorado, No. 43 Iowa, No. 42 Georgia Tech, No. 41 Mississippi, No. 40 North Carolina, No. 39 Arkansas, No. 38 South Carolina, No. 37 Baylor, No. 36 Northwestern, No. 35 Texas A&M, No. 34 UCLA, No. 33 NC State, No. 32 Mississippi State, No. 31 TCU, No. 30 Nebraska, No. 29 Virginia Tech, No. 28 Notre Dame, No. 27 Washington State, No. 26 Pitt, No. 25 Boise State, No. 24 Oregon, No. 23 Texas, No. 22 Tennessee, No. 21 Miami, No. 20 West Virginia, No. 19 South Florida, No. 18 Louisville, No. 17 Kansas State, No. 16 Florida, No. 15 Georgia.

Who's next: No. 13, Tuesday

Bob Asmussen

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