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Oklahoma State football: Shamiel Gary still starting at strong safety

By Gina Mizell and John Helsley Published: August 20, 2013
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photo - Oklahoma State's Shamiel Gary (7) brings down Texas' Jaxon Shipley (8) during a college football game between Oklahoma State University (OSU) and the University of Texas (UT) at Boone Pickens Stadium in Stillwater, Okla., Saturday, Sept. 29, 2012. Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman
Oklahoma State's Shamiel Gary (7) brings down Texas' Jaxon Shipley (8) during a college football game between Oklahoma State University (OSU) and the University of Texas (UT) at Boone Pickens Stadium in Stillwater, Okla., Saturday, Sept. 29, 2012. Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman

Sims, who is 6-foot-4 and 210 pounds, is choosing between Alabama, Southern Miss, Mississippi and Southern. He's rated a four-star prospect by both Rivals and Scout.

“All five schools are up there,” Sims recently told Scout. “I know a couple are smaller than the others, but Southern Miss offered me very early, and a lot of my family went to Southern. I have been going to Southern games almost every month since I was six or seven years old.

“Oklahoma State is a great school and they get the ball to their top playmakers. I really like Ole Miss a lot. Their coaches are great and it is just nice there. Alabama is always good and I know a few of their players, so it would be nice to play there.

“I could see myself at any of these schools. I like all five a lot.”

The Cowboys currently have three Texas prep wide receivers committed for 2014: four-star Keenen Brown of Houston Taylor, three-star Chris Lacy of DeSoto and three-star James Washington of Stamford.

COWBOY DEFENSE STILL PLAYING ‘FIVE DOWN'

No, not “five down” as in five defensive linemen.

“Five down” as in the OSU defense's goal of forcing five turnovers every day in practice.

It's a daily benchmark former coordinator Bill Young implemented during his tenure in Stillwater. And one new coordinator Glenn Spencer has kept as part of his plan to shift to a more aggressive style.

If the Cowboys don't reach that total, they run.

“I want five or more every day,” Spencer said. “And if they don't, they know what's going on. They're intense about it. And there's been some days we've been running (because) we haven't gotten enough.”

OSU's defense was certainly opportunistic in 2011, when it led the nation with 44 takeaways to help lift the Cowboys to the Big 12 title and a Fiesta Bowl win. Last season, the Cowboys tallied just 22, tied for 57th in the nation.