STILLWATER — Extreme Makeover: College Football Stadium Edition nears completion along Hall of Fame Avenue and Hester Street. Still amazing, every time you see it. Still startling, watching OSU could go from rickety Lewis Field to glittering Boone Pickens Stadium, from hopelessness to hope, in a few short years. But progress creates its own headaches, and Mike Gundy, the biggest beneficiary of Boone's brick and mortar, is also the biggest beholder to the transformation. Gundy's job description has changed. He's wearing a new hat, and I don't mean something that sits high on his head. Gundy has entered the ticket-selling business. That's new territory for an Oklahoma State football coach. The Cowboys historically have been mom and pop, not big business. More hang-out-a-shingle than market-to-the-masses. OSU football fans were faithful and consistent. There just weren't that many of them, about 35,000 strong, with stragglers and visitors determining whether attendance crested at 40 or 45. Football coaches were asked to win but not always expected to, were asked to play by the rules but not always expected to, were asked to jump in the fray and fight but not always expected to. Those days are gone. You don't build a 60,000-seat palace with a county fair attitude. You build 60,000 seats because you want them filled. It's Gundy's job to fill them. He's got to get some help from the marketing department and the business office and even the hot-dog vendors. But in big-time college football, it falls upon the coach to fill the seats. OSU averaged 39,857 fans in 2007, so there's not going to be any jump to 60,000 in 2008. But the ascension must start. Gundy doesn't seem all that worked up about the mandate. "My job is to put a good team on the field,” he said. Gundy's done a so-so job of that the past two years but he's done a heck of a job giving fans their money's worth. Football at the Boonedock has been the best show in the state the last two years. Victories of 41-29 over Nebraska, 49-45 over Texas Tech and 41-39 over Kansas State; losses of 34-33 in overtime to Texas A&M, 27-21 in Bedlam, 38-35 to Texas and 43-28 to Kansas. Poke fans don't always go home happy from Stillwater, but they always go home entertained. Give Gundy credit for that. His decision to bring in Larry Fedora's no-huddle, wide-open offense worked for the Cowboys on two fronts. "It gave us a chance to move the ball and score points,” Gundy said. "And people like to watch that style of play. "To win a Big 12 Championship, we're going to have to play better on defense. We understand that. But people have enjoyed watching us play, because of the attitude we have on offense.” The ticket-selling requirement adds pressure to Gundy, but not on an immediate basis. He's not going to get fired in 2008, not unless the bottom falls out of these Cowboys, and there's no reason to believe that could happen. But Gundy has got to put people in the corner seats of Boone's bowl. No OSU coach has been fired by the fans, but it's happened other places. Gary Gibbs was doomed the October day only about 45,000 OU fans showed up to watch Kansas State. Bill Callahan was fired last November because Nebraskans sensed a softening of the ticket demand that sold out every Lincoln game since 1962. Gundy shrugs at his new hat. "The expectations are going to be there whether you have the new facility or not,” he said. Yes, but win at a moderate level in the past, and Stillwater wouldn't boil. Win at a moderate level now, which might hold the attendance to 45,000 or so, and the fire heats up. It's not an easy job. Ticket prices are high, budgets are strained by $4 a gallon gas and OSU isn't trying to entice old fans back, it's trying to produce new fans. That requires winning big, and even that's tough duty. In 1988, OSU averaged 45,881 fans for six home games. That's a good number for the Cowboys, who that year had Barry Sanders and Hart Lee Dykes and a quarterback named Gundy. It was a wild, exhilarating year. The last home game of the season, with Sanders' Heisman Trophy dash coming down the stretch, drew 40,100 for Kansas. Sometimes, winning big doesn't do it immediately. "My responsibility is to put a great product on the field,” said Barry Sanders' college quarterback. "Make ‘em proud ... Oklahoma State people in the last few years have taken a lot of pride in what's happening here. "We're going to have the best facility in the league, arguably the best facility in college football. They will take pride in having a new stadium.” Taking pride will help. Taking a seat will help more.