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OSU coach Glenn Spencer returns to team, leads defensive turnaround

Just a week after his wife died, Oklahoma State defensive assistant coach Glenn Spencer was with the Cowboys in College Station. And they needed him. Spencer help orchestrate a second-half turnaround for the Cowboys defense.
BY JOHN HELSLEY, Staff Writer, Published: September 24, 2011

After halftime, the Aggies managed but 15 rushing yards. And the Cowboys, who thrive on turnovers but failed to get any through 30 minutes, struck for four takeaways in the final two quarters.

“We were hawking the ball, going for it,” Young said. “We had two or three tips. We had a couple of sacks. I was very proud of the effort.”

Cowboys coach Mike Gundy talked of the difficult week that was, in the wake of what was going on with Spencer, who is beloved by the players.

Angela Spencer struggled with heart disease and received a heart transplant in February 2010.

“It affected our staff, it affected our team,” Gundy said. “And it was, because their family is very special to us.”

Glenn Spencer didn't have to be there on Saturday; Gundy instructed him to take any and all time necessary for him and his sons Luke and Abraham to properly mourn and heal.

The Cowboys co-defensive coordinator wanted to be there.

“We would all only wonder what we would do,” Gundy said. “But the greatest thing for him was to get on that plane, bring his boys with him, be with this team and coach football.

“You don't sit at the house and think about it. Because it's tough enough. He's going to have a long time to do that.

“So he called and said, ‘I know I haven't been there all week, haven't watched tape and haven't coached, but I want to be with the team.'”

And the Cowboys wanted him there.

Needed him there.

“He was ready,” said OSU safety Daytawion Lowe.

Spencer was not made available for comment Saturday. But in the game's final minutes, he made his way down to the field and headed for the far side of Kyle Field, clearly emotional, giving and receiving embraces up and down the OSU sideline.

“It's indescribable,” Young said. “It really is. I don't know if anything could be tougher than what he went through.

“But it was good to have him here. We love Glenn and his family.”