The Cowboys finished the regular season with a 9–2 record. At Oklahoma State, Thurman Thomas had 897 rushes for 4,595 yards, 43 touchdowns, and 21 100-yard rushing games. He was also a Heisman Trophy candidate in his senior year. He was a first team selection on the College Football All-America Team in 1987. In the 1987 Sun Bowl, Thomas ran for 157 yards and four touchdowns in the 35–33 victory over West Virginia, keeping Barry Sanders on the sidelines for the majority of the game. Thomas left OSU as the school's all-time leading rusher and his number 34 is one of only three jerseys retired at Oklahoma State. Sanders replaced Thomas as starter the next year in 1988.