PRYOR, OK —
After a lengthy hiatus, the Porter Report is back to raise some questions and eyebrows. I'm sure you were all wondering where it's been for the last few weeks. Short answer? It was holed up in New Hampshire with Walter White and two copies of Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium.
Sorry about that. Lately I can't go more than 15 minutes without referencing "Breaking Bad."
On to the aforementioned question-raising: which Bedlam team loses first? Both the Sooners and Cowboys took a much needed week off Saturday, for different reasons.
Oklahoma is preparing to take on Notre Dame in South Bend and attempt to avenge last season's 30-13 loss behind the arm of a (relatively) untested quarterback, Blake Bell.
Keep in mind here that Bell has exactly one fewer start than his backup, Trevor Knight. Three weeks ago, that sentence would have read quite differently. Time heals all wounds, be it the absence of a newspaper column or, in Knight's case, a bruised knee.
I'm a Bell-iever, but Notre Dame is and always will be Notre Dame. The Sooners have exactly as many all-time wins over the Irish as Bell has starts at quarterback. This one will be a test, but it's a test I think the Sooners should pass. And while passing is good, I also think the Sooners should run a little to set up the play-action.
Oklahoma State is in shallower waters, but they begin Big 12 play against West Virginia this week. If there's one potential trap game the Cowboys need to keep an eye out for, it's this one. WVU head coach Dana Holgorsen knows the Mike Gundy system as well as anyone — he broke school records with it as the Cowboy offensive coordinator in 2010. The Mountaineers are down this year, but Iowa State was having a down year in 2011, too.
On top of all that, the Sports Illustrated report (which I won't get into, because my momma taught me not to use four-letter words) still looms over Stillwater like a big dollar-sign-shaped, marijuana smoke cloud. The ongoing investigation shouldn't affect play on the field, but it's still something that pervades the program.
So who loses first?
That's a tougher question to answer, but I'm going to say the Sooners for one reason.
They play Baylor before OSU does.
That's right, Baylor. The Bears — who OU never lost to until 2011, who were league doormats for as long as I've been drawing breath — are now my favorites to win the Big 12. they've scored at least 69 points in all three of their games so far while leading the nation in passing yardage. Granted, the Bears haven't exactly faced stiff competition, but still. Baylor!
That's how upside down the world is now. Repent now, friends, the end is near.