STILLWATER – As Oklahoma State freshmen a year ago, J.W. Walsh and Josh Stewart made sure to maintain their bonded connection, albeit on the NCAA Football video game.
“We created plays,” Stewart said, “and his player would throw me a touchdown.”
Walsh to Stewart, just like it was back in Texas at Denton Guyer High School.
Still, that was video controller stuff. Their on-field chemistry was on hold, with Walsh in redshirt last fall while Stewart played as a true freshman, latching onto balls delivered by Brandon Weeden. Then Wes Lunt won the job to replace Weeden at quarterback this season, further delaying the Denton duo from doing their thing.
With Lunt lost to a knee injury against Louisiana-Lafayette, Walsh rode to the rescue, leading the Cowboys to a 65-24 romp.
And the redshirt freshman wasted no time reconnecting with Stewart, finding the sophomore receiver seven times for 92 yards and two touchdowns covering 33 and 17 yards.
Walsh to Stewart.
“I mean, it's what we dreamed about,” Stewart said. “Now we're out here doing it for real and it's an unreal feeling.”
Lunt's status remains uncertain, with Cowboys coach Mike Gundy intent on making the Texas Longhorns keep guessing – and preparing – about either option in advance of their clash two Saturdays from now.
Yet as long as Walsh is throwing, Stewart figures to be receiving.
They were frequently connected at Denton Guyer, hooking up regularly as seniors in leading a charge to a runner-up finish in the state playoffs. Walsh passed for 3,200 yards and ran for more than 1,400 yards. Stewart totaled 56 receptions for 971 yards and 10 touchdowns.
“To have Josh out there is just an unbelievable feeling, a comforting feeling,” Walsh said, “to know you've got somebody out there I've been around for I don't know how long. It's just nice to know that he's out there with me.