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Tuesday, March 26, 2013
Is Oklahoma State a contender or pretender?

By David Ubben

The polls are still open on Baylor, but today, we'll take a look at another team in the Big 12 eyeing a title.

I remember talking with Mike Gundy last spring, just a few months removed from bringing a Big 12 and a Fiesta Bowl trophy, and he touched on the new feeling and attitude toward Oklahoma State.

In essence, his argument was this: Everyone looks at you differently once you've done it. By "it," of course, he meant win and win big. Win enough to prove that no one else in the conference could field a team as good as yours. Oklahoma State did exactly that in 2011, and this year, will field another team that could be in the mix to do it again and bring a Big 12 title to Stillwater twice in three years.

Do you believe they can do it? Vote in our poll.

The Pokes have that whole "quarterback dilemma" to sort out this spring: Will Clint Chelf keep his job? Will Wes Lunt reclaim the one he won last spring? Will J.W. Walsh win the job and prove he means more to Oklahoma State's offense than a mere short-yardage package?

The defense was a bit underrated last season, but Bill Young was shown the door in favor of linebackers coach Glenn Spencer, who received a promotion. The Pokes have to find a pass rush, but the linebackers and secondary should be solid, as should the receivers. Josh Stewart leads that group and the rest of the Big 12's returning receivers in receiving yardage, and senior Jeremy Smith is in position to fill in well for Joseph Randle, who left early for the NFL.

So, was Mike Gundy right? Did Oklahoma State definitively proving it could win a Big 12 title make you believe in these guys as a contender? Are you in on the Pokes' chances this season? Or are they just pretending?

Vote away, friends.