Cowboys coach Mike Gundy, after criticizing his team's effort at practice Sunday, said the Pokes turned it around on Monday.
“It was better today,” Gundy said. “The attitude was better, it was more physical and the tempo was better. We practiced well enough to have success. It was much better today.”
Gundy's main focus was on the defensive line, already an area of emphasis this preseason.
“Yesterday, the defensive linemen just allowed themselves to be pushed around, but they were better today,” Gundy said. “I was much, much more encouraged today than yesterday.”
When Gundy flew to Florida to watch his 9-year-old son Gunnar play for a national championship, he knew the timing was far from perfect.
More than missing practice, he regretted not being available for Fan Day and for the 100 men who signed up for Extreme Camp, which offers the opportunity to essentially play the part of a coach – from watching tape to interaction with players.
Still, he said being there for his son was appropriate.
“I made the right decision, I'm sure of that,” Gundy said. “We had our Extreme Camp going, with 100 guys here who really enjoy that, so I really hated leaving them. Then I hated missing the Fan Day. The practice didn't worry me at all. If I walk off the field halfway through practice, they may not even know I'm there.
“The Extreme Camp and the fans were my concern.”
Gunnar's team won one and lost one on Saturday, finishing runner-up.
“It was good for me to be there for my son,” Gundy said. “They had a huge win in the semifinals, then a tough loss in the finals. So I was there for both sides of it.
“And as a parent, that's important. To be there and celebrate with them and to console them and tell them it's OK.”
POSITION WATCH: WR
One of OSU's most skilled positions is wide receiver, led by returning All-American and Biletnikoff Award winner Justin Blackmon.
But beyond Blackmon, Josh Cooper, Tracy Moore, Mike Harrison, Isaiah Anderson, Colton Chelf and Hubert Anyiam all had at least 11 receptions a year ago, with Cooper at 68.
Excitement is attached to some youngsters, too, most notably true freshman Josh Stewart, who has turned heads in practices so far, with his quickness and smarts and his ability to catch the ball.