Oklahoma State football has certainly seen stronger schedules than that of the upcoming 2018 season.
The Cowboys don’t have any Power 5 opponents in nonconference play, though a Week 3 matchup vs. Boise State may have seemed more formidable when it was initially scheduled. CBS Sports even labeled Oklahoma State’s 2018 schedule as the easiest of any Big 12 football team.
And yet the notable aspects of journey which Mike Gundy and Co. will embark on this fall don’t stop there.
Of all the teams in the Big 12, Oklahoma State is the only school with four consecutive home games to begin the 2018 regular season.
The Cowboys will take the field at Boone Pickens Stadium in five of their first six games this fall, when looking at the even bigger picture. The Pokes have three straight nonconference games in Stillwater — Missouri State, South Alabama and Boise State — followed immediately by their Big 12 opener vs. Texas Tech in Week 4. Oklahoma State finally hits the road in Week 5 vs. Kansas, but returns home to face Iowa State the first weekend of October.
And as some may expect, there’s a downside to have a cluster of home games at the start of the season. That, of course, would be the inevitable reality of away games piling up towards the stretch run of the 2018 campaign. The Cowboys play on the road in three of their final four games of the year, including potentially challenging contests at Oklahoma and TCU. Should the Cowboys make the Big 12 title game, they’d be staying around in North Texas for the contest at AT&T Stadium a week after facing the Horned Frogs in on Thanksgiving Weekend in Fort Worth.
Oklahoma State season-ticket holders — be warned. With four of the team’s seven home games played in September, there’s bound to be a good amount of football played in warm weather this fall. The Cowboys take the field only twice in Stillwater during the month of October, and just once in November.
Needless to say, it will be critical for the Cowboys to take advantage of the earlier home games against weaker opponents. Anything less than 4-0 to begin the year (perhaps even 6-0) and the Cowboys won’t have done themselves any favors once the second half of the season arrives.