OSU football Q&A: Cooper Bassett talks about Cowboys' increased depth on defense

Defensive end Cooper Bassett talks about the Oklahoma State defense's depth and speed, and — of course — the quarterback race.
by Jenni Carlson Published: April 23, 2012

Has it become more of an emphasis?

We do preach it. Whenever we're in the film room, Coach (Bill) Young's constantly saying, “Get your hands up, get your hands up, pressure the quarterback.” Whenever we're on the field, it's “Get your hands up, get your hands up.” We know if we can get an incomplete pass, shoot, we don't have to run downfield and chase after a wide receiver. (Laughs.)

So, really, this is all about not wanting to run?

It benefits us not running as much as it does stopping the offense. That's a little extra added incentive.

Everyone is talking about who the starting quarterback is going to be. Are you tired of the talk?

Not too often as a defensive player is the first thing you're asked by everyone is something about a quarterback. I'm not necessarily sick of it. We've got three guys who are competing their butts off, and all three of them are great players. I'm looking forward to one of them stepping up and really solidifying the quarterback position.

What are the strangest place you've been asked about the quarterbacks?

I was in line at Old Navy. I was buying some T-shirts, and someone was like, “So, you know, how's practice going?” I said, “Oh, it's going good.” They're like, “So, who's going to be quarterback?” I said, “Are you serious right now? I play defensive end. I don't know. It's like a different team. Your guess is as good as mine.”

by Jenni Carlson
Jenni Carlson, a sports columnist at The Oklahoman since 1999, came by her love of sports honestly. She grew up in a sports-loving family in Kansas. Her dad coached baseball and did color commentary on the radio for the high school football...
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