Cowboys over BCS snub, love Fiesta
Several Oklahoma State players have been asked the past few days in Arizona if they are upset over being in Arizona instead of waiting to go to New Orleans and playing LSU in the BCS National Championship game. Cowboys quarterback Brandon Weeden has been adamant about the topic that this fulfills the Cowboys' goals this season and with the great golf courses here, which he took some advantage of earlier in the week, he is quite happy with the Fiesta Bowl.
"This is as good as it gets, being in Scottsdale and playing in the Fiesta Bowl," Weeden said. "I think every team's goal is to play in the championship. I don't think there is any guy in the locker room let down about it. We are all excited to be here. This is a great venue, and pretty sure everybody in the country will be watching Monday night."
Weeden has been happy with the team's preparation as they have mixed fun with work and done each accordingly. He is also pleased with the offense getting back in rhythm and not being rusty heading into the game Monday after a lengthy layoff since the win over OU on Dec. 3.
"It has been good. We have done a lot of two-minute stuff, with our defense one speed, ones versus ones, twos versus twos," explained Weeden. "It is more of a game situation. If you go against the scouts, yeah, you worry about having rust and not playing full speed. We have been going full speed against our own defense. The coaches have done a great job as far as that goes."
The motivation is there as somebody, OSU or Stanford, is going to finish at least No. 2 in the nation if not, win an AP national championship.
"I think so," said Weeden of that being enough motivation along with pride. "That's any time you step on the field. You want to prove you are one of the best teams in the country. When you are going up against a team like Stanford that has been solid all year long, it is good for us to show where we fit in the country."
Like Luck, Weeden also likes the idea of the pride involved in a showdown of quarterbacks and seeing who can quarterback their team to a win.
Weinke An NFL Role Model
We stood there for several minutes firing questions at Oklahoma State All-American offensive tackle Levy Adcock about his NFL future, which he has. Adcock wouldn't bite as he refuses to discuss anything other than the Fiesta Bowl.
"If I do then I may allow this game to slip up on me and my teammates and we get beat," said Adcock. "That is all I am talking about. I'll talk the other stuff later."
Quarterback Brandon Weeden is heading to that same league and, in fact, Weeden and Adcock are both playing in the Senior Bowl in January. Weeden did comment to the extent that he has a role model for his journey toward playing in the NFL in the same quarterback he was often compared to in college, ex-Florida State and NFL quarterback Chris Weinke.
"He set the standard. I looked at what he did. He had a long career in the NFL and pretty successful quarterback and also the backup," said Weeden of Weinke. "So you can use a comparison. I don't think about it that way. Once you are in the draft, it is a positive my age will help me immediately. I don't have to worry about maturing. I have already played a professional sport. I have been fortunate to have some money in my pocket. That's not an issue. I think it is all positive."
Mt. Rushmore of OSU Receivers
For years Oklahoma State fans have called their school, "Tailback U." When you've had players like Barry Sanders, Thurman Thomas, Gerald Hudson, Terry Miller, and Bob Fenimore along with more recently Kendall Hunter then it is a fair statement. However, more recently you could call the Cowboys the home of wide receivers. Now how about the best of the best.
Two-time Biletnikoff Award winner and All-American Justin Blackmon figures to be the head of the class of Oklahoma State wide receivers but when suggested he would be on a Mt. Rushmore of Cowboy wide receivers that could also include the likes of Dez Bryant, Rashaun Woods, or Hart Lee Dykes; Blackmon was very humble.
"Being in the conversation with those guys and those of us at Oklahoma State is a huge honor," said Blackmon. "To be in those conversations, it goes to show how I have been (performing) to be mentioned with those guys because they are all very talented."
He's Got the Beat
Speaking of Blackmon, did you know he is a drummer. Yes, like Ringo Starr or for younger folks like Taylor Hawkins of the Foo Fighters. Blackmon has a drum set that he regularly bangs on.
"I keep a drum set down in the basement and I love to go down there and just bang around on the drums and wake up my roommates. I'm just average. I don't know what music I'm playing. I just bang on them and make noise."
Blackmon did have experience as he played the drums in the Plainview Marching Band in high school.
"I played in the band at halftime through my sophomore season, but then the coaches wanted me in the locker room at halftime, so they ended that."
Stanford Cardinal Passion
We talked about the X and O ability of all the coaches in the match-up between the Oklahoma State offense and coordinator Todd Monken and the Stanford defense and the coordinators in Derek Mason and Jason Tarver. All three have coaches major college and in the NFL. All have a lot of passion about what they do. Mason said he expects that out of his players and says he has it at Stanford.
"Our guys soak it up and they love it," said Mason. "When we recruit we asked prospects, no matter if they are five-star, four-star, or two-star if they love football. If they like it then I tell them we probably can't use you, but if they love it then we need them. We are a blue collar program. I know people think Stanford, but we are blue collar and we go to work everyday and we need players that love football."