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OSU football coach Mike Gundy: ‘We've got to get better on defense'

BY JOHN ROHDE, Staff Writer, Published: October 31, 2011

Can such an extreme combination of good and bad win the national crown?

"I think they're certainly a living testament to that (with) stops in the red zone and turnovers," said Baylor coach Art Briles, who lost 59-24 to the Cowboys last Saturday in Stillwater. "If people are moving the ball between the 10s, it doesn't really matter, as long as they're not scoring points.

"And Oklahoma State's really good offensively."

Here were Gundy's responses to other teleconference questions:

Staying focused with the No. 3 national ranking:

"We're trying to keep things consistent throughout the week. We try to stay on a normal routine. ... They (the players) know what's going on. There's so much out there. I'm sure they get it on campus, they get it in the community, their parents, with social networking, Facebook, text messaging. We don't really have to remind them of that. Our concern is making sure we get quality practices in and that they can compete at a high level and play with energy Saturday."

Is there possibly less pressure this week with all the attention on No. 1 LSU playing at No. 2 Alabama at the same time Saturday:

"Could be, not sure. The one thing people have to remember is that in this community, we're in a state that thrives on college football. We don't have a professional team here. There's a lot put on college football so when our team is having success in this area, in their little environment, people know who they are and I'm sure it's getting brought up more than it would be on a national scene with what's going on in Alabama."

On the play of junior kicker Quinn Sharp, who is third nationally in punt average (47.59 yards), No. 8 in scoring (10.88) and leads the nation in touchbacks on kickoffs for the third straight year (38):

"He's been tremendous for us. Somebody put together some kind of statistic that had his kicking, field goals, his kickoffs and his punting and what he's given us. He's been really good. He's been three guys, and we've talked about it. We're pleased that he's able to stay healthy and fresh in handling all those duties. (Special teams coordinator) Joe DeForest has done a great job of limiting his reps on certain days. On Sundays, he doesn't kick at all. He doesn't kick at all on Monday. He does a little bit of one on Tuesday, a little bit of the other on Wednesday and both on Thursday. We're very pleased with his production up to this point."

John Rohde: 475-3099. John Rohde can be heard Monday-Friday from 6-7 p.m. on The Sports Animal Network, including AM-640 and FM-98.1. Follow him on Twitter @RohdeOK.