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OSU gave Ashley DeForest a place to call home

Father Joe DeForest promised to remain in Stillwater until daughter graduated high school
BY GINA MIZELL, Staff Writer, gmizell@opubco.com Published: January 15, 2012

He was there for OSU's 16-13 victory at Oklahoma, which he believes is the biggest win in school history. He remembers recruiting by himself for two weeks in 2005, because he was the only assistant that stayed at OSU after Les Miles left for LSU and Mike Gundy was hired as head coach. He watched as the new facilities were built. He coached the 2008 Ray Guy Award winner in Matt Fodge and the 2010 Lou Groza Award winner in Bailey.

And DeForest capped it all off with what he called the “perfect ending”— OSU's first outright conference title and a dramatic overtime victory against Stanford in the Fiesta Bowl this past season.

Ashley sent her dad off to Morgantown on Friday. They'll see each other on the weekends, just like any normal recruiting season.

And OSU will still stay in the DeForest family, as Ashley will attend the school next fall and continue to cheer hard for the Cowboys.

“She's grown up here as a Cowboy, and she's going to be a Cowboy for the rest of her life,” Joe said.

Except, Ashley said, when those Cowboys play West Virginia. The Mountaineers have accepted an invitation to join the Big 12 and could become a one of OSU's conference rivals as soon as next season.

“I'll be in the student section by myself wearing a West Virginia shirt,” Ashley said with a laugh.

Joe insists Ashley should root for OSU, even when the Cowboys play WVU. And even though he's passed that old white hat down to his daughter, Joe will always appreciate the time he spent in Stillwater while Ashley grew up.

“Oh my God, 11 years in one place,” Joe said. “Can you name five coaches that spent 11 years at one place? Oklahoma State will go down as the job that defines me, and it always will. I love the fact that (Ashley's) going (to OSU).

“We could not have hit it any better. We hit the lotto, but now it's time to see if we can hit the Powerball.”


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