OSU notebook: Justin Blackmon asked to return punts

BY GINA MIZELL, Staff Writer, gmizell@opubco.com Modified: October 16, 2011 at 9:57 pm •  Published: October 16, 2011

Justin Blackmon wanted to add returning punts to his repertoire—and his head coach obliged.

Blackmon fielded three punts in the second half against Texas on Saturday. But he did not get to showcase his return skills, as he called for a fair catch on all three chances.

Using Blackmon in the return game also helps give Josh Cooper, who has eight punt returns for 43 yards so far this season, a rest from time to time.

“We'd like to take some reps away from Cooper — he plays a lot in the game,” OSU coach Mike Gundy said. “Blackmon's asked to be involved in the return game some, so we've worked on it and we'll try to bring him along slowly as the season progresses.”

Josh Stewart and Andrae May have also returned punts for the Cowboys this season.

STILL ROAD WARRIORS

OSU recorded its eighth consecutive road victory Saturday in Austin to move into a tie with Oregon for the nation's second-longest active road winning streak.

Virginia Tech leads the nation with 11 straight road wins after Saturday's 38-17 victory at Wake Forest.

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