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Oklahoma State football: Mike Gundy has high expectations for Calvin Barnett, Blake Jackson

Barnett was a force in the middle for OSU last season, tallying 30 tackles (8.5 for loss), one sack and four quarterback hurries. Jackson finished second on the team with 598 receiving yards.
BY GINA MIZELL, Staff Writer, Published: March 24, 2013

STILLWATER — Mike Gundy often talks about the predicament surrounding junior college transfers.

Just when they're coming into their own, it's time for them to leave.

The second offseason is often where a player makes his biggest strides. Rob Glass' strength and conditioning program has whipped him into physical shape. He's gotten used to the daily mental grind of OSU's football and academic demands. The newness has worn off.

That essentially gives two-year transfers one shot at maximizing their full potential in college. And that's why Gundy has high expectations in 2013 for defensive tackle Calvin Barnett and receiver Blake Jackson, two Cowboys who have already become immediate starters and contributors since arriving at OSU.

“They generally get much better in their second year,” Gundy said of junior college transfers.

Gundy cited two recent examples in Ryan McBean, who became a fourth-round NFL Draft pick following his second season at OSU, and Ryan Robinson, who was an underrated yet consistent performer for last season's defense.

And Barnett and Jackson both have plenty to build on.

Barnett was a force in the middle for OSU last season, tallying 30 tackles (8.5 for loss), one sack and four quarterback hurries and earning Big 12 Defensive Newcomer of the Year honors. But sometimes his aggressiveness turned to recklessness — two personal foul penalties on one play in the Arizona game serves as Exhibit A — and needed to be reeled in by coaches.

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