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Schedule analysis: Oklahoma State Cowboys

With the season just weeks away, we’ve been reviewing the schedule for each Big 12 team.

We continue the series with Oklahoma State:

Nonconference opponents (with 2016 record)

Sept. 2: vs. Tulsa (10-3)

Sept. 9: at South Alabama (6-7)

Sept. 16: at Pittsburgh (8-5)

Big 12 home games

Sept. 23: vs. TCU

Oct. 14: vs. Baylor

Nov. 4: vs. Oklahoma

Nov. 18: vs. Kansas State

Nov. 25: vs. Kansas

Big 12 road games

Sept. 30: at Texas Tech

Oct. 21: at Texas

Oct. 28: at West Virginia

Nov. 11: at Iowa State

Gut-check time: Three of the past four seasons, Bedlam has decided the Big 12 title. And in all three cases, the Sooners have won, including a 38-20 victory last season to take the conference crown. This time around, the Cowboys get the Sooners back in Stillwater. Can Oklahoma State finally exorcise those Bedlam demons while taking a major step forward in the College Football Playoff picture?

Trap game: The week after Bedlam, Oklahoma State goes to Iowa State. The last time Oklahoma State traveled to Ames with national championship aspirations, well, Cowboys fans don't have to be reminded what happened.

Snoozer: If Oklahoma State can get past K-State, then potentially all that would stand between the Cowboys and a trip to the Big 12 championship game would be Kansas in the regular-season finale. All anticipation would likely spin forward past that game.

Final analysis: This has a chance to be the best team Mike Gundy has fielded in Stillwater. In fact, Oklahoma State could be favored in every game -- except against Oklahoma. Once again, Bedlam will go a long way toward dictating whether this season is viewed as a success or failure. And that could include a rematch in the Big 12 title game.