Oklahoma State football: Charlie Moore returning punts for now

David Glidden could be the permanent answer, but the job belongs to Moore at this point.
by Gina Mizell Published: August 24, 2012
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photo - OKLAHOMA STATE UNIVERSITY / OSU / COLLEGE FOOTBALL: OSU's Charlie Moore runs past Jimmy Bean, left, Miketavius Jones, and Cameron Gravelle, right, on his way to a touchdown during Oklahoma State's spring football game at Boone Pickens Stadium in Stillwater, Okla., Saturday, April 21, 2012. Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman
OKLAHOMA STATE UNIVERSITY / OSU / COLLEGE FOOTBALL: OSU's Charlie Moore runs past Jimmy Bean, left, Miketavius Jones, and Cameron Gravelle, right, on his way to a touchdown during Oklahoma State's spring football game at Boone Pickens Stadium in Stillwater, Okla., Saturday, April 21, 2012. Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman

Stewart, who was projected as a contender to return punts and kicks coming into the season, is not listed on the depth chart at either spot.

So for now, the job belongs to Moore. And make no mistake, it's a new job for the junior whose main special teams responsibilities at OSU so far have been on coverage units.

Moore, a high school quarterback, estimated he returned about two punts back then. But he did play center field in baseball, so he's used to tracking down balls as they're sailing high in the air. And as a receiver, Moore has solid hands and speed.

Within the first week or so of fall camp, Moore and wide receivers coach Kasey Dunn, who also works with the punt and kick returners, jointly decided to try him at that spot.

Moore started by fielding balls off the JUGS machine. Then it turned into practice reps, starting with last Saturday's scrimmage.

“He hasn't been out there enough,” Gundy said Thursday when asked to assess Moore's progress. “He's only been there four or five practices. We have a lot of faith in Charlie, for a variety of reasons. He works hard, it's important to him, he's willing to do whatever we ask him.”

Added Moore: “I went back there and felt natural at it. Coach Dunn has some confidence in me about it. He approached me and said, ‘I want you to work on this. I want you to be the guy.' Ever since then, I've been working at it every day.”

And what's been Moore's biggest adjustment in his new role?

“Eleven guys coming at you full speed ready to take your head off,” he said. “It's a different feeling. But I'm working to stay at it. It's a new thing. I like it.”

by Gina Mizell
OSU Sports Reporter
Gina Mizell joined The Oklahoman in August of 2011 as the Oklahoma State beat writer, where she covered the Cowboys' historic run to the Big 12 championship and Fiesta Bowl in her first season on the job. Before arriving in Stillwater, Gina was...
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Who's returning?

With the departure of Josh Cooper, Oklahoma State is looking for a new punt returner in 2012. Here are the candidates to fill that role.

Charlie Moore

Though he only started returning punts in practice about a week ago, Moore currently — and somewhat unexpectedly — tops the depth chart. He's got great hands and underrated speed, and his experience as a baseball center fielder in high school should help him quickly get comfortable with locating the ball high in the air and running it down.

David Glidden

Likely the ultimate answer at punt returner, Glidden was limited at the end of spring practice and during fall camp because of an ankle injury. But he was perhaps the most impressive during the spring because he's sure-handed and has shifty moves after the catch. Not to mention, his small stature (he's 5-foot-7) can actually work to his advantage when running behind the coverage team.

Justin Gilbert

Already one of the nation's premier kick returners, Gilbert certainly has the speed, awareness and athleticism to make an impact on punt returns. He's listed second on the depth chart, but are coaches comfortable giving Gilbert yet another responsibility in games and practices?

Josh Stewart

A part-time kick and punt returner last season, Stewart appeared to be a likely candidate to fill one or both of those roles again in 2012. But despite being the only Cowboy on the roster who returned a punt last season, Stewart is currently off the depth chart. Stewart struggled in the spring finale, muffing multiple punts, and will also have an increased role as a starting inside receiver this season.

By Gina Mizell

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