FRANKLIN AND CHELF: James Franklin’s last two seasons at Mizzou have been plagued by injuries. Oklahoma State senior Clint Chelf lost his starting job for parts of this season. The senior quarterbacks wrap up their college careers starting the Cotton Bowl. Franklin missed most of four games during the middle of this season with a shoulder sprain. He has 8,481 total yards and 72 touchdowns in his 41 career games. Chelf started the opener for the Cowboys, but was replaced for several weeks before regaining his starting spot. He has thrown for 1,792 yards with 15 TDs and six interceptions this season.
BIG 12 REUNIONS: Missouri and Texas A&M both left the Big 12 for the SEC after the 2011 season. Ironically, in both seasons since, they’ve represented the SEC in the Cotton Bowl, which through this year’s game has matched teams from those two leagues. When a four-team playoff replaces the BCS next season, the Cotton Bowl will become part of the rotation to host semifinal games.
BEEN ON BOTH SIDES: When Mike Gundy was the offensive coordinator at Oklahoma State from 2001-04 before becoming the Cowboys coach, the tight ends coach and recruiting coordinator was Josh Henson, who stayed for Gundy’s first year as head coach before going to LSU and then Missouri in 2009. Gundy and Henson, who spent countless hours together preparing game plans, are on opposite sides in the Cotton Bowl. Henson wraps up his first season as the Tigers’ offensive coordinator, a promotion he got after last season.
ONE TO BE BEST: Gary Pinkel has 101 wins in his 13 seasons as Missouri’s coach, matching Don Faurot (1935-42, 46-56) for the most in school history. Pinkel, who went to Missouri after 10 seasons at Toledo, is 174-100-3 overall. Of the current 14 SEC coaches, none has been at their school longer than Pinkel. Mark Richt arrived at Georgia in 2001, the same year Pinkel joined the Tigers.
FINISH AND START: Oklahoma State is playing the first of consecutive games at the Dallas Cowboys’ massive NFL stadium. After ending this season Friday night in the Cotton Bowl, Oklahoma State will be back in the stadium to start their 2014 season against Florida State on Aug. 30 in the annual Labor Day weekend college game at the stadium.