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OSU football team's summer work about to begin

BY BRANDON CHATMON Published: May 29, 2011

This summer, Martin will likely fill that role. He's a player who demands respect and has already earned it with his play on the field. When Martin speaks, his teammates listen. The senior took a while to warm up to a leadership role, but heading into his final year, expect him to demand excellence from his defensive teammates while setting the tone with his own actions.

Get a feel for which freshmen can help immediately: Cowboy fans didn't start hearing about running back Joseph Randle and linebacker Shaun Lewis until fall camp last August, but the duo began turning heads during the summer.

In late July, Lemon was already speaking of Lewis' focus and determination before the 2010 Big 12 Co-Defensive Freshman of the Year had even put on the pads. And Randle had already impressed with his football knowledge, uncommon maturity for his age and desire to make an impact.

This summer, incoming freshman such as running backs Herschel Sims and Desmond Roland, defensive tackle James Castleman and receivers Josh Stewart and David Glidden, will get the opportunity to impress their veteran teammates immediately. They could fight for a playing role this fall.

Continued development of Brandon Weeden's relationship with his receivers: One of the biggest advantages of running the “Air Raid”-style offense is the ability to get quality repetitions during non-contact, 7-on-7 passing drills.

Weeden's ability to read what his receivers are going to do against certain defenses made OSU's offense explosive a year ago. The All-Big 12 quarterback understands — and trusts — what Blackmon and Josh Cooper, the Pokes' top two receivers, will do on certain plays.

Now, Weeden needs to develop similar relationships with Hubert Anyiam, Michael Harrison, Tracy Moore and the other receivers that are likely to emerge as threats opposite Blackmon and Cooper.

If he does, OSU's offense goes to another level.