Cowboy Football Notebook: Day 1

With the suffocating extreme heat Oklahoma and the southwest has experienced the Oklahoma State staff determined it would be better for practice to begin at 7:30 a.m. Friday. That is some early rising as compared to seasons and fall camps in the past, but head coach Mike Gundy said his team is actually used to it.

"They have to have finished eating breakfast by 6:30 a.m.," Gundy said when asked what time players need to be at the complex in the morning. "They train in the summer with Coach (Rob) Glass and they have the option of being at the 6 a.m. workout or 2 p.m. (workout), and I think it is 100 percent that they are at the 6 a.m. workout. So they are used to being up early."

Gundy on Addressing Expectations
This season is different for the Oklahoma State football program in that a year ago the team was picked to finish fifth or sixth in the Big 12 South by most of the pundits that follow or predict college football.

The Cowboys had a chip on their shoulder going into the season, but this team is ranked eighth in the nation in the preseason USA Today Coaches Poll. Fans and media are high on the Cowboys and predicting a potential championship season.

Gundy said it was addressed in the first team meeting of the season, how to make sure you keep a level head and stay hungry about achieving goals for this season.

"We tell them the truth and that has gone on really from April until now," Gundy said. "The fans and the media are going to think that you really have a good football team and that you should perform at a high level. We have a good football team and we should perform at a high level.

"The difference being last year, some of our approach was you kind of have something to prove to everybody and can you blame them for thinking you aren't very good. What do we have to bring to the table? Now, it is more that we have some positive things to bring to the table and you have to perform and handle it thr right way."

President Burns Hargis on No. 8 Ranking
We had a chance to catch up with Oklahoma State University President Burns Hargis on Friday morning. Hargis appeared on "Sportstalk with Robert Allen and Friends" and was more than happey to talk football and the Cowboys recent news that they are ranked eighth in the preseason USA Today Coaches Poll.

"That it can't sneak up on anybody," Hargis said with a chuckle and at the same time a serious look. "That is really the truth. I think everybody has recognized how this program has been built under Coach Gundy and his great staff, how the talent level has improved.

"You just know that Oklahoma State isn't going to sneak up on anybody and opponents are going to have to line up and go at it. Everybody knows they have to do their very best or they aren't going to beat us."

Hargis also said he has no doubt that Oklahoma State's record freshman enrollment for this year is tied to success in athletics, particularly tied to football success. Hargis feels the size and talent of the incoming freshman class at OSU has the opportunity to take the University to even greater heights in the classroom.

Weeden Says Knee Brace Just Precautionary
I was hit up early at practice on Friday by one of the Extreme Camp attendees and he asked me why quarterback Brandon Weeden was wearing a knee brace on his left knee. "Did he have a lingering injury from last year's Bedlam Game?" the man added.

I had to think for a minute, but Weeden started that in the spring. He leads into his throws with that left leg and knee and it is exposed.

"It is all just to protect myself," Weeden said. "I wore it in the spring and started wearing it then. I'm not going to be running around (beyond scrimmage), so I might as well take every effort to protect myself."

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