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OSU's Mike Gundy pleased fans, alums experiencing success

BY GINA MIZELL, Staff Writer, Modified: August 25, 2011 at 5:07 pm •  Published: August 25, 2011

Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy notices it almost everywhere he goes.

When he's out to dinner with his family. When he's walking around the OSU campus. When he's running errands around Stillwater.

More people are wearing orange. More people are talking about the Cowboys.

With just more than a week until OSU kicks off the 2011 season against Louisiana-Lafayette and with school back in session, the preseason hype surrounding the No. 9 Cowboys keeps growing.

But while Gundy has largely orchestrated this type of buzz at his alma mater and “dream job,” he said it means more to him that others associated with the program get to enjoy the excitement that comes with last season's success and this season's expectations.

“I'm happy for the players, because they work extremely hard,” Gundy said at Thursday's press conference, the last before the opener. “I'm happy for the board of regents, the administration, the people that have lived here and have been in this state and have been Cowboy fans for 50 years that can hold their head high.”

Here's a look at what else Gundy said during Thursday's press conference:

On the development of the defense:

“We have to get inside linebacker play from guys that nobody knows who they are. I had mentioned to the team that nobody really knew who (Justin) Blackmon and (Brandon) Weeden were last year, either, except the local media. So there's an opportunity for guys to step up and make plays. How some of those guys mature and how they develop early in the season and as the season progresses, nobody knows. But hopefully we've instilled the right information in them and they're trained and they'll continue to get better and they'll live up to the expectations of the team.”

On Weeden's place among the nation's elite quarterbacks:

“It's hard for me to say, because I don't know what's out there. I know that I wouldn't trade him for anybody. There are good ones in this league. The guy in Norman (Landry Jones) is playing good, the guy in College Station (Ryan Tannehill) is playing good, the guy down in Waco (Robert Griffin) played well, just to name a few that we compete against. So I don't know what's out there. But his personality, his ability, what he's given to this team and how he's developed, I wouldn't trade him for anybody in the country. After watching him in the spring, I think he'll play this game for a long time from here on out, because he's put together to do it. He's bought in and he's willing to play with pain and learn and do all the things it takes to be a good quarterback.”

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