Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy met with defensive tackle Calvin Barnett on Sunday morning to discuss his three personal fouls in Saturday's loss to Arizona.
Barnett is a physical monster, capable of terrorizing Big 12 offenses. Those tools on display Saturday, even during the inexcusable penalties.
But that's the problem. No matter the talent, if Barnett can't control his emotions, his skill will translate into a detriment to the team. Controlled aggression is good; uncontrolled aggression can be disastrous.
“He understood and admitted that he got out of hand,” Gundy said at Monday's news conference. “(He) had played the way that he always played, but at this level, you can't get away with that.
“I think he understands that and he's moved into a stage to try to correct those mistakes and make himself better and make our team better.”
As a whole, OSU was flagged 15 times for a school-record 167 yards against the Wildcats.
COOPER BASSETT CALLS LAST WEEK'S PRACTICES ‘LACKADAISICAL'
While answering a question about OSU's performance against Arizona, Cowboy defensive end Cooper Bassett mentioned that he felt the team may have been “lackadaisical” in recent practices.
Later, Gundy was asked about Bassett's comments. And upon hearing from whom the statement came, Gundy chuckled a little, knowing the unmatched enthusiasm OSU's most intense player brings to games, practices and even the film room.
“Cooper is not maybe the best barometer for that because he's like the guy that keeps running through the wall and he can't get through and then he collapses and dies and the wall's still there,” Gundy said. “That's what he's going to do. So that's what he compares everything to, which is awesome.”
Gundy used his common “good, not great” assessment of last week's practices, admitting that the intense heat in Stillwater and the fact that the Cowboys “hadn't been challenged” against Savannah State were factors.
“They just went through the motions and were good, not great,” Gundy said. “They just didn't perform like they should have, but it wasn't so bad that I was alarmed.”
MONKEN TAKES BLAME FOR WES LUNT'S PICK-SIX
When evaluating Wes Lunt's three-interception performance against Arizona, the general conclusion is just one was his fault.
One happened when Tracy Moore slipped and fell in the middle of his route. One went off Josh Stewart's hands. The other happened when Lunt felt pressure and made an off-balance throw, which was snatched by Jonathan McKnight and returned for a touchdown to all but put the game away for Arizona.
But offensive coordinator Todd Monken took blame for the third interception. He called a third-and-12 play with an empty backfield, so when the Wildcats brought a zero blitz, there were no extra blockers to help Lunt.
“He threw it to the right guy, just late. He saw it late,” Monken said. “Will that happen later in his life? No. But did it happen (Saturday)? You bet it did. It's my fault. It's not his fault.”
OSU is 8-0 against the Ragin' Cajuns all-time, including a 61-34 victory in last season's opener.
Through two games, ULL is plus-three in turnover margin and is giving up just 49 rushing yards per game.
Neither the Cowboys nor Ragin' Cajuns has allowed a sack through two games.
The 11 a.m. kickoff is the earliest at Boone Pickens Stadium since Bedlam in 2004.