The Oklahoma State Cowboys escaped Lawrence, Kan., with a 20-14 victory over the Kansas Jayhawks Saturday, extending the Jayhawks' conference losing streak to 15 games. While the loss may hurt, Kansas fans are finding solace in the fact that their team was competitive against one of the Big 12's premier programs.
SB Nation's Kansas blog, Rock Chalk Talk, points out that while some fan bases may find nothing of value in a moral victory, Kansas fans desperately needed to see signs of life:
This game provided that. It was a competitive Big 12 game that Kansas wasn't finding a way to lose, but instead finding a way to fight toward a win. It was a game where the Kansas defense entered the game with a solid well developed game plan and the players executed that plan and played with energy. It was a game where in the 4th quarter, Kansas might have actually looked like the team with fresh legs and more mental toughness.
The Cowboys kicked a field goal to take a 20-0 lead with 14:22 remaining in the game. Just when it looked like the Jayhawks were about to roll over, they staged a rally and found a way to cut the lead to six points. Kansas couldn't complete the comeback, but it was better than Oklahoma State in most aspects of the game. The Jayhawks had more total yards and first downs, and they didn't turn the ball over. Running back James Sims had a standout performance, gaining 138 yards and a touchdown on 27 carries.
Kansas couldn't come up with the win, but Jayhawk fans believe the fourth-quarter effort may be a good sign for the future:
Down 20, Kansas made this a game. That would not have happened with this team a year ago. I don't know if Charlie Weis is the ultimate answer to our football woes, but at least we're seeing the ability to field a football team that can compete on some level with other teams in the league.