John Helsley
Sports OSU Reporter Sr.

John Helsley grew up in Del City, reading all the newspapers and sports magazines he could get his hands on. And Saturday afternoons, when the Major League Game of the Week was on, he'd keep a scorecard for the game. So the sports appeal was was deep-rooted at an early age.

Mrs. Jackson, an English/Journalism teacher at Del City High, plucked him for the school paper, The Eagle Beacon, and John was hooked. While he detoured through a brief accounting career, John returned to college (Central Oklahoma) for a second degree and a second career that has seen him cover everything from the preps to the pros at The Oklahoman.

John lives in Edmond with his wife Roberta and two daughters, Sarah and Jillian, who are keeping the family tradition of cheering for the baseball team with the birds on the bat.

  • OSU football camp ready for opening day

    By John Helsley | Published: Mon, Aug 3, 2015

    Oklahoma State begins preseason practices Tuesday, earlier than most of the nation’s teams due to their Sept. 3 season opener at Central Michigan. Dates to know First day of practice: Tuesday Media/Fan Day: Saturday Season opener: Sept. 3 at Central Michigan Last season Record: 7-6 overall, 4-5 Big 12 Bowl: beat Washington, 30-22, in the Cactus Bowl Returning starters Offense (9) QB Mason Rudolph (So.) WR James Washington (So.)

  • OSU football: Cowboys' secondary now primary in talent, depth

    By John Helsley | Published: Mon, Aug 3, 2015

    STILLWATER — The Cowboys return six — count ’em, six — starters in the secondary. And, no, Oklahoma State hasn’t switched to some 3-2-6 defensive alignment in the giddy aftermath of last December. Yet through returning regulars from the final 2014 depth chart, one player returning from injury and another arriving holding starter credentials elsewhere, OSU carries uncommon experience and depth into this season. “We have a lot of guys coming back, a lot of experience,” said cornerbacks coach Tim Duffie. “Our numbers are really good. We’re just trying to put these guys into position to play and help us win.

  • OSU Football: Has Oklahoma State become Transfer U?

    Mike Sherman,john helsley | Updated: 9 hr ago

    Two seasons ago it was Tyler Patmon, a Kansas defensive back. Last year it was Josh Furman from Michigan. This year Oklahoma State has two transfers from BCS schools, including a starting cornerback from the Big Ten, ready to contribute.  The Oklahoman's OSU beat writer John Helsley talks with sports editor Mike Sherman about how OSU became a transfer haven, and what recent transfers Michael Hunter and Chad Whitener could do for the Cowboy defense in 2015.

  • OSU Wrestling: Oklahoma Sports Hall of Famer Pat Smith on getting pinned in his first collegiate match

    By John Helsley | Updated: 11 hr ago

    Former Cowboys great Pat Smith enters the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame tonight. I wrote a story in advance of his induction last week and you can read it here. I truly enjoyed talking to Pat, who must rank as one of the elite few collegiate wrestlers in OSU's illustrious history. He is the school's only four-time NCAA champ and started his string by winning as a true freshman, a very difficult feat. He closed his career on a 98-match winning streak. Pat's greatest assets -- work ethic and confidence -- really came through in my conversation with him.

  • OSU football notebook: Glenn Spencer challenges defensive line

    BY JOHN HELSLEY | Published: Sat, Aug 1, 2015

    There’s a call to fill the holes left by departed seniors James Castleman and Ofa Hautau at the tackle spots. And there’s a louder call from defensive coordinator Glenn Spencer for everyone along the front, Ogbah and fellow end starter Jimmy Bean included, to compete.

  • Oklahoma State football: Talent, depth make WR a major asset for Cowboys

    BY JOHN HELSLEY | Updated: Thu, Jul 30, 2015

    Three starters appear to be set: Brandon Sheperd, who came on late last season as a dominant presence; David Glidden, the man of the reliable hands who led last year’s squad with 42 catches; and James Washington, whose six touchdowns a year ago ranked fourth nationally among true freshmen. Beyond them – and including them – the competition is on.

  • Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame: Pat Smith's drive, determination led to greatness

    BY JOHN HELSLEY | Published: Wed, Jul 29, 2015

    After romping unbeaten to three state championships at Del City High, Smith forced his way into the lineup at OSU and kept dominating, closing his collegiate career with a school-record 98 straight wins and four titles.

  • Oklahoma State baseball adds six transfers

    john helsley | Updated: Tue, Jul 28, 2015

    Oklahoma State's recent recruiting classes have been high-ranked and productive. Josh Holliday's latest class could offer immediate impact, too, with the program announcing the addition of six junior college transfers, including Garrett Benge, a former Yukon High standout who was named NJCAA Division I Player of the Year this past season. Benge, an infielder, is one of three players coming to the Cowboys after their freshmen years at junior college. “When you look at this particular group of transfers, what really sticks out for me is the statistical success that some of them have had, as well as having been parts of big-time winning teams,” Holliday said.

  • Oklahoma State football: All eyes fixed on Oklahoma State quarterback Mason Rudolph

    BY JOHN HELSLEY | Published: Sun, Jul 26, 2015

    The small sample sure was impressive, with Rudolph directing Bedlam and bowl wins and pumping optimism into 2015 as perhaps the Big 12’s most intriguing quarterback.

  • Oklahoma State basketball: 2016 guard Tre Evans decommits

    john helsley | Updated: Wed, Jul 22, 2015

    Tre Evans announced, via Twitter, that he's no longer committed to Oklahoma State, saying that "My family and I have decided the best thing for me and my future is to reopen my recruiting." The guard, a senior to be, committed to the Cowboys in October and stood as OSU's lone commitment for the class of 2016. Back in October, Evans seemed sold on the Cowboys and their style of play, which he considered a fit for his own fast-paced play. “Ever since they offered me, I felt like our communication has been great," Evans told The Oklahoman at the time. "I felt like they needed me. I wasn’t just some other recruit. Then when I went on my visit last Friday, it just felt like home. It was a family

  • OSU football notebook: Rudolph's influence growing among players, coaches

    BY JOHN HELSLEY AND BERRY TRAMEL | Published: Tue, Jul 21, 2015

    Rudolph played solid in a 49-28 loss at Baylor, then quarterbacked OSU to a 38-35 overtime upset win at OU, followed by a 30-22 Cactus Bowl victory over Washington. That convinced Gundy to name Rudolph the starter despite the presence of veteran J.W. Walsh on the roster.

  • OSU football: Cowboys lose defensive tackle Leveni to injury

    BY JOHN HELSLEY | Published: Tue, Jul 21, 2015

    Vili Leveni, pegged to start at defensive tackle, suffered a torn Achilles during summer conditioning work and will miss the upcoming season.

  • Big 12 Media Days: Conference takes lead in enhancing player safety

    BY JOHN HELSLEY, Staff Writer, | Published: Mon, Jul 20, 2015

    At the collegiate level, the Big 12 assumes a lead on the topic of safety with this rule, which takes effect immediately for the 2015 season. The current NCAA model allows three contact practices in a week. A contact practice is defined as one where players are tackled to the ground. So “thud” drills, which are popular at Oklahoma State, and drills where another player wraps up another player, but doesn’t take him to the ground, won’t count against a team’s contact practice allotment.

  • Oklahoma State basketball: OSU gets late recruit

    BY JOHN HELSLEY | Published: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    Oklahoma State carried a roster hole into the summer, with a scholarship still dangling unclaimed.   Wednesday, the Cowboys plugged the void in a big way, getting a commitment from four-star wing Davon Dillard, who had been pledged to Cal, and will be eligible for the upcoming basketball season.   Rated as national Top 100 recruit after playing his senior year at Our Savior New American School in Centereach, N.Y., Dillard draws frequent descriptions as a strong and athletic forward who is dynamic in transition.   Those match his descriptions, too.

  • Oklahoma State softball: Kenny Gajewski's To-Do List

    BY JOHN HELSLEY | Published: Wed, Jun 17, 2015

    Kenny Gajewski has been on the job as OSU’s new softball coach since Saturday, after the Cowgirls went without a coach for more than a month. So there’s work to do – playing catch-up and planning ahead – in efforts to return the program to respectability: Reach Out. “My first thing was obviously to contact all my new kids. We’ve got 14 returners, we’ve got four incoming kids. I made a bunch of phone calls. I tell you, I had butterflies. It was a very exciting experience. Once I made the first call, I could feel their energy. I could feel it from the first call. There were kids I was on the phone for well over an hour with.

  • Oklahoma State softball: Gajewski embracing Bedlam's other side

    BY JOHN HELSLEY | Published: Wed, Jun 17, 2015

    STILLWATER -- As Kenny Gajewski contacted each of his Cowgirls upon his hiring as Oklahoma State’s new softball coach, one question kept coming up. “They asked me if I’m going to be able to hate OU as much as them,” said Gajewski, a former Sooner baseball player who found his way to softball at Florida with another former Sooner, Gators head coach Tim Walton. “I said, ‘Hey, I’m a Cowboy now. I’m going to hate them just as much as I do Texas. And Baylor. And Kansas. And Iowa State. I’m going to hate them all. We’re going to compete against OU the way we compete against everyone else.’” Gajewski is now on the other side of Bedlam, in a sport that has been dominated recently by Oklahoma. And Bedlam

  • OSU Football: Cowboys Get OL Commit

    John Helsley | Updated: Sun, Jun 14, 2015

    Oklahoma State picked up a commitment Sunday, with offensive lineman Teven Jenkins giving his pledge to the Cowboys. Jenkins, entering his senior year at Topeka High School, is considered one of the top prospects in Kansas. A 6-foot-6, 300-pound tackle prospect, Jenkins is listed as a three-star recruit by, as well as the No. […]

  • OSU Softball: Cowgirls look to NCAA champion for coach

    John Helsley | Published: Sat, Jun 13, 2015

    Oklahoma State officials waited a while to name a new softball coach. They were waiting on a champion. OSU named Kenny Gajewski, who just finished his third season as an assistant for NCAA champion Florida, as the program’s seventh coach on Saturday in a statement released by the university. Gajewski (pronounced `GUY’-ehh-ski’), a former Oklahoma […]

  • Oklahoma State safety Deric Robertson leaving Cowboys

    John Helsley | Updated: Thu, Jun 11, 2015

    Cowboys safety Deric Robertson announced via Twitter that he’s leaving the football program and seeking a transfer. Robertson, projected to be a reserve entering his junior season, didn’t announce where he’s heading next, but he did thank Mike Gundy, Glenn Spencer, the rest of the coaching staff and even the city of Stillwater in moving […]

  • Oklahoma State adds a new RB to the mix in Dedrick Scrivens

    John Helsley | Published: Tue, Jun 9, 2015

      Oklahoma State’s running back depth chart is deepening.A position of concern in mid-winter, the Cowboys have added options, including one Tuesday, in preferred walk-on Dedrick Scrivens. A two-star Texas prospect out of McKinney’s Boyd High School, Scrivens announced via Twitter that he’d be attending OSU. “Honored and blessed to say I’ll be furthering my […]

John Helsley Mon, Aug. 03 2015 03:11:46 PM CST #OkState Wrestling. Pat Smith outtakes leading into Hall of Fame induction:
John Helsley Sun, Aug. 02 2015 12:22:41 PM CST RT @TimGriffinBig12: Our EN top 25 starts today with a team poised to surprise in the Big 12 -- No. 25 Oklahoma State. #okstate http://t.c
John Helsley Sun, Aug. 02 2015 12:22:32 PM CST RT @kylefredrickson: Per the @TheHoChen, McCollum -- a 3-star OT (Spring, Texas) -- has #OKstate in his top 3
John Helsley Sun, Aug. 02 2015 12:22:03 PM CST Defense next...
John Helsley Sat, Aug. 01 2015 08:08:34 AM CST Edmond North HS softball car wash today! Get a supreme wash and donate to great cause (yes, my daughter plays). 9 am to 2 pm front of school
John Helsley Fri, Jul. 31 2015 04:06:54 PM CST Wonderful news for @cowboyvoice! Cancer free! And soon to be back at the mic. Way to whip it, Larry. #okstate
John Helsley Fri, Jul. 31 2015 02:20:39 PM CST RT @cowboyvoice: Prayer POSSE you did it... Pet scan showed no cancer!! I'm cleared for some @CowboyFB #blessed #downgoescancer http://t.c
John Helsley Fri, Jul. 31 2015 11:21:36 AM CST All in Edmond tomorrow, come to Edmond North High School for a supreme car wash to benefit the Huskies softball team. 9 am to 2 pm.
John Helsley Thu, Jul. 30 2015 08:59:53 PM CST Course five: dessert, New York cheesecake. Wait, no wine?
John Helsley Thu, Jul. 30 2015 08:35:51 PM CST Course four: Kobe beef. (Again, waiting in the wine) #OdysseyDeCulinaire #odysseyok #thefooddude
John Helsley Thu, Jul. 30 2015 08:21:27 PM CST @OSUfreak82 yes, big time
John Helsley Thu, Jul. 30 2015 08:11:45 PM CST Third course: Alaskan Halibut. (Waiting on the wine) #OdysseyDeCulinaire #odysseyok #thefooddude
John Helsley Thu, Jul. 30 2015 08:05:15 PM CST And if you want to know what these courses -- and wines -- are, here's the menu:
John Helsley Thu, Jul. 30 2015 07:49:38 PM CST Second course. Here we go....
John Helsley Thu, Jul. 30 2015 07:47:36 PM CST First course... Superb! Four more to come. Oh, and wine. Can't wait. #OdysseyDeCulinaire #odysseyok #thefooddude
John Helsley Thu, Jul. 30 2015 07:32:08 PM CST First course to a fabulous night at the Odyssey de Culinaire! #odysseyok
John Helsley Thu, Jul. 30 2015 06:07:25 PM CST RT @kylefredrickson: What are the chances #OKstate freshman DT Darrion Daniels makes an immediate impact? His position coach weighs in http
John Helsley Thu, Jul. 30 2015 04:54:47 PM CST Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame: Pat Smith's drive, determination led to greatness
John Helsley Tue, Jul. 28 2015 08:55:02 PM CST a little @marshallmoses33 there, and not just because he's lefty.
John Helsley Tue, Jul. 28 2015 08:34:42 PM CST #OkState baseball: Six new transfers added to the mix