One of Oklahoma State's kicking duties has been filled, as coach Mike Gundy said following Saturday's scrimmage that true freshman Ben Grogan will be the Cowboys' field goal kicker when they open the season against Mississippi State.
The reason, at least partially, is because Gundy revealed that sophomore Bobby Stonebreaker is “not with (the team) right now.” But Grogan came to Stillwater with expectations to compete for the job right away, as he was rated a three-star prospect and the No. 9 kicker in the nation by Rivals in the 2013 recruiting class.
“I like his demeanor up to this point,” Gundy said of Grogan. “It's really early, but in fairness, he kicked good (Saturday). Not great. But he kicked good. I was pleased with his field goals and his PATs for his first scrimmage.”
Junior Kip Smith could be the favorite to take on the kickoff duties. Smith, a transfer from UCLA, was rated the top kicker in the nation by Rivals coming out of high school in 2010 and earned starting duties for the Bruins as a redshirt freshman before a leg injury ended his season after two games. He attended OSU last year but did not play football.
Gundy said he has not yet decided who will punt for the Cowboys. Smith and junior Michael Reichenstein are in the mix for that job.
DEFENSIVE ENDS, RUNNING BACKS MAKE STRIDES
OSU staged its first scrimmage of the fall Saturday evening, running about 120 plays inside the new Sherman Smith Indoor Training Center.
Gundy said he was pleased overall with the result and singled out the progress of the defensive ends and running backs, two positions groups with inexperience heading into the season.
“There were good plays on offense, there were good plays on defense,” Gundy said. “We had a few miscues, but for the most part, it was a clean scrimmage. The quarterbacks played well. The guys on defense that we would expect to play well competed and made plays.
“We made some strides at the defensive end spot and made some strides at the running back spot, so I was very pleased.