Cowboys coach Mike Gundy carries a history in offense, as a former Oklahoma State quarterback and play caller.
But as a head coach, he's all about the defense. So when defense dominated scrimmaging during Tuesday's practice, bringing both energy and attitude, Gundy was pleased.
End Jamie Blatnick and linebacker James Thomas picked off screen passes for big plays. Linebacker Shaun Lewis and cornerback Devin Hedgepeth, among others, also made plays.
“I want the defense to win every day,” Gundy said. “I'm convinced that we have to continue to recruit more speed, more athleticism on defense, and find ways to get big defensive tackles in here as we develop this program.
“I hope the defense dominates every day. I'm obviously comfortable with the experience we have on offense; we'll move the ball. I spend most of my time in practice with the defense anyway, and I enjoy that part of it.”
LEADER OF THE PACK
Sophomore backup quarterback Clint Chelf said the leadership of senior starter Brandon Weeden permeates the entire OSU program.
“Everyone looks to him no matter what,” Chelf said. “Even if he wasn't the quarterback, everyone would still look to him. He carries himself in such a manner. He's so cool and calm. He's just a natural leader.”
Weeden is getting plenty of national attention this season, but Chelf said Weeden still might not be fully appreciated.
“Everyone around Stillwater and Oklahoma realized how good he was last year,” Chelf said. “Now nationally he's getting the exposure, and I think he deserves more. I've never seen a guy throw the ball like him, and the way he carries himself, I think he deserves a lot more attention.”
Some teams choose to coach special teams by committee, dividing duties among multiple coaches. At OSU, associate head coach Joe DeForest has served as special teams coordinator since he arrived from Duke in 2001.
“To me, that's the way to do special teams,” DeForest said. “When you split up special teams and say, ‘You have punt team. You have kickoff. You have kickoff return,' there's no single person who has a vested interest in all of it. It's too splintered. You don't see the big picture.
“The guy coaching punt, doesn't coach punt return and might say, ‘I want to use that guy.' ‘Well, I'm using him on this one.' ‘Well, you can't.'
“You have to see the big picture and how many reps these guys are getting on offense and defense and how many reps they're getting in the kicking game. I love what I do. I've been doing it 20 years now.”