Reports: Oklahoma State QB Spencer Sanders out for regular season after thumb surgery

Nick Bromberg
Oklahoma State quarterback Spencer Sanders (3) during an NCAA college football game against Kansas in Stillwater, Okla., Saturday, Nov. 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)
Oklahoma State quarterback Spencer Sanders is the team's second-leading rusher. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)

The Oklahoma State offense is down another key player.

According to multiple reports, quarterback Spencer Sanders underwent thumb surgery Monday after he was injured in the second half of No. 21 OSU’s game against Kansas on Saturday. Sanders is set to miss the regular season. That includes Oklahoma State’s game against Oklahoma on Nov. 30.

Sanders has been Oklahoma State’s starting quarterback since beating out Dru Brown for the job at the beginning of the season. Sanders is 155-of-247 passing for 2,065 yards and 16 touchdowns and 11 interceptions. He’s also the team’s second-leading rusher with 137 carries for 625 yards and two touchdowns.

Brown, a transfer from Hawaii, will presumably take over as OSU’s starter on Saturday against West Virginia after he replaced Sanders on Saturday. Brown has thrown just 18 passes in 2019 but started 22 games at Hawaii. He threw for over 5,000 yards in his two years of playing time with the Warriors and threw 37 touchdowns to 15 interceptions.

Tylan Wallace out for the year

Sanders’ top receiving weapon, Tylan Wallace, has missed the previous two games after suffering a torn ACL in practice. Wallace had 53 catches for 903 yards and eight scores before he went down. He’s still the team’s leading receiver too. Dillon Stoner is second on the team with 33 catches for 475 yards.

Without Wallace and now Sanders, RB Chuba Hubbard is a stronger focus of Oklahoma State’s offense. The sophomore has 259 carries for 1,726 yards and 20 touchdowns in 2019. He’s had 20 or more carries in each of OSU’s nine games against FBS opponents in 2019 and has gotten over 30 carries in four games. It won’t be surprising if he gets 30 or more carries in a game over the next two weekends.

An impact on Oklahoma’s playoff hopes?

Oklahoma State fans won’t care about this at all, but Sanders’ injury could hurt Oklahoma’s playoff chances. A strong win over an OSU team with Sanders that will likely be 8-3 entering the final week of the season would have likely looked better than a win over a Cowboys team without its top QB and WR.

That may seem like a minor point to make, but No. 9 Oklahoma needs all the help it can get — along with three wins — to move into the top four of the College Football Playoff rankings and make the postseason for the third time in four seasons.

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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports

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