Just halfway into his sophomore season, Justin Gilbert is already taking aim at kick return records.
Gilbert has already tied OSU's mark for touchdown returns, matching Perrish Cox with four scores after Saturday's 100-yard runback at Texas.
In sight: C.J. Spiller's NCAA record of seven.
Ask Gilbert, he'll get there.
“It's all about leverage and reading the blocks and being patient and hitting the hole as fast as I can,” he said. “Once I hit the second level, I'm pretty confident that I'm getting in the end zone.”
Cowboys coach Mike Gundy said he predicted this of Gilbert in previous private conversations.
“I felt like by the time he finished here, you could forget about Perrish Cox,” Gundy said. “So far, he is making that statement true.”
Gilbert's touchdown return against the Longhorns came from four yards deep in the end zone. Does he have a limit?
“It's all up to the lead returner, whether he wants me to stay in or not,” Gilbert said. “If I'm catching the ball and moving backwards, he'll want me to stay in. If I catch it, I'm wanting to come out. But it's all up to him. If I hear him say stop, I'll stop.”
Gilbert's big return at Texas was followed by a 100-yard runback by the Longhorns' Fozzy Whitaker. On the ensuing kick, Gilbert fielded the ball deep in the end zone and took a knee, to the displeasure of many.
“I was kind of disappointed, too,” he said. “I was a little bit winded. But I still think I could have returned it to the house again.”
HOMECOMING KICKOFF SET
The Cowboys' homecoming game against Baylor will kick off at 2:30 p.m., set for national television on ABC and ESPN2.
The game will feature a reverse-mirror telecast, meaning those who don't receive the regional ABC feed can view the game on ESPN2.
This will mark the seventh OSU game to be televised this season, including three in a five-game stretch on ABC. The Cowboys have already won at Texas A&M and Texas while appearing on ABC.
Injuries have hampered Missouri already this season.
And so it continues.
The Tigers reportedly will be without starting defensive end Terrell Resonno, who left Mizzou's win over Iowa State on Saturday with a sprained knee. Backup defensive end Brayden Burnett has also been ruled out.
WEEDEN: SMITH ‘A FREAK'
Cowboys quarterback Brandon Weeden enjoyed a great view to Jeremy Smith's big touchdown runs against Texas.
Most impressive to Weeden: Smith's burst.
“Jeremy, he's a freak,” Weeden said. “I didn't know he had those wheels. I didn't know he could pull away from guys like that.
“And he's one of those guys who's determined. You hand the ball off to him, he almost rips your hand off taking the ball from you.”
Behind Smith and Joseph Randle, the Cowboys produced their first 200-yard rushing game since the season opener at Louisiana. Smith took advantage of a Texas defensive game plan designed to slow Weeden and the passing attack.
“Keep putting five men in the box,” Weeden said. “That's what Texas did. They dared us. And he kind of put the team on his back and carried us.”
UPON FURTHER REVIEW
Immediately following OSU's 38-26 win at Texas Saturday, Gundy wasn't overly excited about the way his team played.
After a second look via video, he upgraded the effort.
“The players played a little better than what I would of thought,” Gundy said. “Afterward, I made the comment that I thought we played good, not great. I think we played a little better than good, for the most part.
“We had some glaring mistakes that really stood out that took away for some of our play.”