Cowboys Preview Texas Game

Oklahoma State Head Coach Mike Gundy

Oklahoma State Head Coach Mike Gundy

Oct. 10, 2011

Oklahoma State Media Luncheon Quotes

Texas Game – Oct. 10, 2011

Head Coach Mike Gundy

Opening Statement

“The team had a good start yesterday for the game this week. The players are off today, but we are looking forward to having them back tomorrow. We will start unraveling the game plan for Texas and proceed with what we have done the last couple months. We would like to keep everything the way it has been, in preparation. The players are in a good frame of mind. The team chemistry is great. There is a lot of excitement surrounding Oklahoma State football. The players are staying focused in preparation. This week is very important. We want to travel to Austin and let our guys have some fun on Saturday.”

On winning in Austin last season

“It was a good win. When you have played at a high level like we had over the last few years, having so many close games and not being able to get over the hump. It made it a good win for our team and the university. For everyone involved it was very positive. I am sure it had some effects on our recruiting. It also changed the way we were perceived across the country. The win was another step in our goal, to hopefully win a championship.”

On Texas

“They are better than they were in our opinion. I said that this morning in the telephone conference. You use caution when talking about Texas football and needing to get better. I think Oklahoma played very well. Once the game got rolling, the momentum changed. I cannot speak for Texas, or their staff. I do know that there is some youth in key positions. That can factor in situations when things do not go well.”

On how Texas is different from last year

“They have the Boise State approach. Formations, motions, shifts, movement and a variety of ways to get to the base same plays that they want to run. Misdirection passing, keeping the quarterback on the perimeter and throwbacks seem to be the direction they want to go in their play calling.”

On the progress of the defense

“I think we are getting better. We have linebackers that are five games into the season. Our tackles are getting better each week. I feel that we did a better job last week playing gap sound defense. We tightened some of the creases, where we were giving up big plays in the weeks before  last week’s game. That is really important in our opinion. In defensive football nowadays, you want to be sound and make them earn everything they get versus missed assignments and creases in your defense.”

Defensive Coordinator Bill Young

On Jamie Blatnick

“He was just doing what we were asking him to do. Jamie, in his situation, was just running his tail off to get the football. The harder you work, the luckier you get and that was his illustration of great effort and being in the right spot at the right time.”

On Cooper Bassett

“Cooper Bassett, what a blessing he is. He is like a coach on the field. He is very intelligent. I coached a young man from Stillwater High at Kansas named Russell Brorsen and he’s the epitome of the same guy. You tell him something you better back it up the next time because he’s got it memorized.”

On Switching Bassett from tight end to defensive end

“When he was in high school I tried to recruit him as a defensive end, and we kind of removed the tight end position from our offense and we had an over-abundance of guys there so we moved them to defensive end where we had a shortage of men.”

Offensive Coordinator Todd Monken

On Texas’ defensive adjustments

“What OU does is somewhat similar to what we do so I think you have to go with what they did last. I don’t think they would look at what they would last week and scrap it because they did stop the run. They gave up a few big plays, some that were untimely. They had them in a third and 25 and went two-man and gave up a hole shot and gave up a few down the middle, and then gave up a big run. Really the only play they had running the ball was a 64-yard run. I would think they would look at it and say it’s the same old thing. They are going to do what they do and just try to do it better.”

On OSU’s up-tempo offense

“It has seemed to work that way. It started with the second half at Texas A&M and even this week, staying in a personnel group and trying to tempo a little bit more, whether that includes keeping their personnel on the field or not getting lined up or not getting calls. Part of that plays into what we’re doing and part of it plays into what they’re doing.”

Sophomore Linebacker Caleb Lavey

On playing in his home state of Texas

“Of course it’s going to be a big one because it is the Longhorns. We get to go down to Austin and play a team from my state, but we’re going to treat it like it’s any other game. The intensity is probably going to be higher because it’s Texas, but they’re just the next team in the way of our goal to stay undefeated. We’re treating it just like it’s the next one. It’s a big one though.”

On Alex Elkins

“Elkins has definitely filled the role at Will; he’s done an awesome job. He’s become a leader both with the plays he’s making as well as vocally. Linebackers, we’re a young group but we’re a tight group. We’re just continually trying to get better. We know we make mistakes but we’re young and we’re learning as fast as we can and just trying to become better every week.”

On coming to Oklahoma State

“I love the coaches and the players. The facilities are awesome; that’s the first thing you see, but I just love these guys. I couldn’t have made a better choice. I’m really close with the team and I just love playing with them.”

Senior Linebacker James Thomas

On Brandon Weeden

“Age doesn’t really matter. It’s how you approach the game. Weeden approaches the game with a want-to-learn attitude and he’s learning and getting better every day.”

On Preparing for Texas

“The past is the past. They lost (last weekend), we won. We are focusing primarily on them. We don’t care about their record and they don’t care about ours. It’s just playing UT; we’re playing the Longhorns. We have to just bring it and give it everything we’ve got.”

On being a part of success at OSU

“We’re not blind to it, but we’re not going to “hoorah” for it either. It’s amazing to see how this program has skyrocketed to being one of the top programs in the nation. I was here when we were 7-6 and we went 11-2 last year. It’s a big improvement and it goes to show that hard work and dedication pays off.”

Sophomore Running Back Jeremy Smith

On preparing for Texas

“Pretty much we just can’t listen to what anyone says. We have to continue to stay focused and watch film.  We also need to prepare hard, rest, and eat good food.”

On what the team learned from the Kansas game

“We learned a lot about the defense. Those guys are always fired up, even in practice. The defense is doing their thing this year.”

On what the team is working on halfway through the year

“We still have to get better. We gave up a sack the first play of the game. We still need to continue to get better, regardless of the score; there is always room for improvement.”

Junior Cornerback Brodrick Brown

On stopping both Texas quarterbacks this week

“We will have to contain each because both of them have good arms and can run.  Basically, we need to contain and keep our eyes open and do not let them do what they like to do.”

On preparing for Texas

“We are going to prepare like any other game. Texas has a lot of athletes and five-star recruits. They are a good football team. The score of the Oklahoma game does not matter and the score did not reflect how close the game was. They run a lot of formations. They have a lot of movement and motions. We just have to prepare for what they give us.”

On your impressions of Texas

“They have a great group of guys. They have a lot of good players at the skill positions along with two good quarterbacks who they rotate in. We have to prepare for them and be ready for whatever they throw at us.”

Senior Quarterback Brandon Weeden

On if he anticipates Texas’ best effort after losing to Oklahoma

“Yeah, no question. Anytime you come off of a game like they just played – a physical game against a rival – and it didn’t go the way they planned, we know we’re going to get their best shot because they’re going to be hungry and they’re going to want to get things back on the right page. It’s going to be a hard, physical game. Their defense is really good. I’ve watched a little tape already. They have athletes. They’re Texas and they have good athletes. We have to go execute. We can’t overlook them, that’s for sure because they have plenty of weapons.”

On the offense feeling confident about scoring against Texas

“We feel like that as an offense all the time. We feel like our offense is explosive, and do we want to score it every time we touch it? Absolutely, but it’s just not that easy. We respect Texas a lot, we really do. They have great athletes, but we also have a lot of confidence in our offense.”

On how big the Texas win was last season

“I think it was big for a couple reasons. One, we have so many guys from Texas on our roster, which is huge because they were also recruited by Texas. And secondly, just to finally put that behind us, get that monkey off our back where everybody was telling us we haven’t won there in so long and all the stuff that goes along with it. We’re the same team really. We lost a couple of key players, but we’re still as hungry as we were last year, we’re more experienced and it’s going to be a fun game. We’re looking forward to it. Austin is a fun place to play and it’s going to be exciting.”


Senior Offensive Lineman Casey LaBrue

On what the offensive line needs to do against Texas

“Stay physical. We have to stay focused because they show a lot of different looks. They’re really athletic, good players. They have a sound defense, so we have to really stay focused and not lose track of what our game plan is.”

On the importance of getting backup players experience against Kansas

“It was good. It’s good for the future of the program. We always need depth because you never know who’s going to go down and when you might need somebody. So, I think it was crucial for that to happen.”

Junior Wide Receiver Justin Blackmon

On Texas

“I really haven’t gotten into film yet, but I think it will be a good game. It’s always going to be tough going down there to Austin and playing on their home field. Texas is always going to be a big, physical team.”

On if the score from the Texas-Oklahoma game is misleading

“We can’t go in overlooking them just because they got beat by OU the way they did. It’s going to be a good game, they’re going to come out swinging and they’re going to come out playing like Texas should. They have high standards and they’re going to come out swinging.”

On how he feels about the offense after the Kansas game

“We’re feeling pretty good about it, but we know we can improve in a lot of spots. We’re going to go in, work hard, get a game plan and come out excited.”

Senior Defensive End Jamie Blatnick

On being disciplined in playing positions

“Getting lined up is not hard to do. You have to pay attention. There are times when guys have tunnel vision, by locking in on the guy in front of them. Sometimes they do not realize they are lined up in front of a tight end and not a tackle.  We can help tunnel vision from occurring with good communication. We are ready for this week’s game. Texas hit OU with several different looks. OU managed to get out of that, but you can’t always afford those types of things. They run the ball a lot and they will scheme you in that way. We will be working on communication this week.”

On Texas losing by 38 points

“I did not watch the game. I know not to judge how well a team played by just the score. Scores can be misleading. Anyone who is a fan could look at the Texas score and think that they got beat pretty badly. If you break the game down by plays you can see what plays cost you in the end. The score doesn’t always mean a team is bad.”

On preparation for Texas

“We noticed that Texas’s defensive linemen were really getting after OU’s offensive line. They played very physical, by getting in the backfield and causing mayhem. With any team if you can cause that kind of uproar you can start taking momentum. We are going to have to attack and take the line of scrimmage. We cannot allow them time to run reverses and pitch-backs.”

On causing turnovers

“We practice it. If you practice forcing turnovers, you will do it in a game. The harder you work, the luckier you get.”



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