K-State Wildcats vs. Oklahoma State Cowboys: 5 things to know about rare Friday game

Scott Sewell/USA TODAY Sports

After spending Saturday away from the football field, Kansas State will return to action this week with a rare Friday game against Oklahoma State.

The Wildcats will head to Boone Pickens Stadium for an important conference game that will be played in front of a national viewing audience.

K-State (3-1, 1-0 Big 12) will try to build on its victory over UCF, while Oklahoma State (2-2, 0-1 Big 12) will look to bounce back from a road loss against Iowa State.

Here is everything you need to know to start preparing for this week’s game.

K-State vs. Oklahoma State: Game details

Kickoff: 6:30 p.m. Friday

Where: Boone Pickens Stadium, Stillwater, Okla.


Radio: KCSP (610 AM) in Kansas City and KFH (1240 AM and 97.5 FM) in Wichita

Betting line: Kansas State by 10.5 with an O/U of 55.5

Five things to know

1. K-State is rarely favored by this many points on the road in Big 12 play. It was eye-opening to see the Wildcats open as double-digit favorites against the Cowboys. K-State has been favored by more in road conference games over the years, but it usually only happens when it plays at KU and the Jayhawks are down. To put this point spread in perspective, K-State hasn’t been favored by more on the road against a Big 12 opponent (other than KU) since 2014 at Iowa State. The last time K-State was favored by more on the road against any opponent was 2021 at Kansas.

2. This looks like a down year for Oklahoma State. Under head coach Mike Gundy, the Cowboys have been the most consistent team in the Big 12. They have played in 17 straight bowl games and finished near the top of the conference standings many times during Gundy’s tenure. But Oklahoma State is struggling this year. It is off to a 2-2 start and two of its losses have come to mediocre competition. South Alabama, which is 2-3, beat the Cowboys 33-7 in Stillwater last month. Iowa State beat the Cowboys 34-27 but hasn’t looked good in any other game.

3. The Cowboys are excellent in the red zone. One thing Oklahoma State does do at a high level is take advantage of its scoring opportunities. The Cowboys have scored every single time they have entered the red zone this season, going a perfect 11 for 11. They have five rushing touchdowns, four passing touchdowns and two field goals.

4. Chris Klieman has struggled in previous road trips to Oklahoma State. The Wildcats haven’t won at Boone Pickens Stadium since Klieman took over as coach in Manhattan. Oklahoma State beat K-State 26-13 in 2019 and 31-20 in 2021. Granted, that is a small sample size and it’s hard to jump to any conclusions off those numbers. But the Cowboys are expecting a sellout crowd on Friday. That could make this a tricky road game for the Wildcats.

5. Will Howard leads the Big 12 in touchdowns. The K-State quarterback has found the end zone six times this season. He has caught one touchdown pass and also rushed for five scores. Howard has crossed the goal line so many times that he has scored more points than some kickers. He ranks eighth in the Big 12 in total scoring, with only kickers in front of him. Add on eight touchdowns as a passer and it has been a productive year for Howard already.