Cotton Bowl: Cowboys Notebook

Oklahoma State head coach Mike Gundy calls Thursday practices during the season a walk thru but they are more extensive than that as they last about an hour and 20 minutes. The Cowboys went through all special teams situations on Wednesday (normally a Thursday practice for Saturday games) and then broke up and worked the game plan on either side of the ball against scout teams.

The practice is strictly in helmets and shorts. The Cowboys were done a little after 3 p.m. and back at the hotel for a 4 p.m. meeting for the travel squad that will shift to a secondary hotel for the night before the game.

This will really be the last night for entertainment as the players have an early curfew but can enjoy the hospitality room, several small events, and there is the Texas Two-Step with country artist Lee Brice at The Anatole. The coaches and support staff are expected to take in that event.

Thursday, the Cowboys will have a late afternoon walk thru with the travel squad only as they move hotels and stop for about 50 minutes at the stadium on the way.

Cowboy Network Preview Show
Wednesday night at 6 p.m. live and in person at The Texan Sports Bar and Grill in The Gaylord Texas Hotel the Cowboys Radio Network will host a Cotton Bowl Preview Show featuring the "Voice of the Cowboys" Dave Hunziker, John Holcomb, and Robert Allen.

We will have a great lineup of guests including head coach Mike Gundy, quarterback Clint Chelf, linebacker Caleb Lavey, cornerback Tyler Patmon, and former OSU Cowboy and current Dallas Cowboys kicker Dan Bailey. The show will run an hour until 7 p.m.

Moore Gets A Little Melancholy
Cowboys senior wide receiver Charlie Moore can be excused for feeling a little mixed about that final collegiate game. Moore recently lost his grandfather and is heavy hearted over his death. His family has really enjoyed watching him play and the Moore's are known for traveling all over the place following Cowboys football.

Moore has contributed to some big plays this season as he has caught 31 passes for 415 yards and five touchdowns. He has also completed two of two passing for 49 yards including a key toss to Josh Stewart in the win over Baylor. Moore has learned a lot of lessons including one that might surprise some fans.

"It's all about the work that you put in and in college ball the crazy thing is everybody is about the same," Moore theorized. "If you put in the extra work, it's who comes together. If you do that then you can win a lot more games than people may think you can."

Moore is confident that the OSU program is in good hands in the future.

"I think all those guys at receiver, you have Jhajuan Seales and Brandon Sheperd and guys like that you have seen a lot and then David Glidden, he may not have contributed as much on the field the last year, but he is going to be a big leader on this team," Moore said when asked about the future. "Really, young guys like (Marcell) Ateman and (Ra'Shaad) Samples will be playing next year."

Moore, who told me he will train with a personal trainer that also works with Kendall Hunter and former Texas Tech quarterback Graham Harrell, plans on trying to make it in the NFL. He also looks forward to returning to Stillwater as an alumnus.

"I'm excited that it is cool to think about as a senior that we get to pass the torch and I hope we provided them with some wisdom this season."

Yurcich Says It's About the Coaching, But This is Nice
Oklahoma State offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich has been under the gun a lot this season as fans demanded the kind of performance and results on offense that had been seen in recent seasons with former coordinators like Todd Monken and Dana Holgorsen.

Yurcich did not have the same offensive makeup but the Cowboys did improve through the course of the season offensively. Many fans felt Gundy's hire of a Division II coordinator from Shippensburg was partly at fault. I would disagree with that.

Yurcich has a very bright football mind and displayed that in meeting with the media on Wednesday morning. He also answered a question on coaching and players at all college levels and whether it would be nice for more to get to experience the reward of preparing and playing in a Cotton Bowl game.

"I think we are all lucky to be able to coach young men and I feel very lucky to be able to coach in this Cotton Bowl, no question about it," Yurcich answered. "It's more of a calling than it is anything else and that's the way it was for myself for many years more than anything else.

"It is just great to have another game to coach, whether there are 5,000 in the stands or 50,000. It is just fun to coach and to see guys compete and just be able to go out and enjoy the camaraderie with the players. It's a lot of fun. This (Cotton Bowl) makes it a heck of a lot of fun."

Now this Cotton Bowl is extra special. Those of us that are veterans of covering this game realize the Cotton Bowl has upped their game and they are using this game as a dress rehearsal for next season's National Championship Game, which will be played at AT&T Stadium and hosted by the Cotton Bowl.

Reunion Tower Will Light Up for the Winner
It was announced Wednesday by Cotton Bowl officials and the Dallas Reunion Tower that the winner of Friday night's game will be further honored and all driving by or having site of downtown will see who wins the game by the color of Reunion Tower. Following the contest it will light up either orange for Oklahoma State or gold for Missouri depending on the winner of the game. Thursday night it will alternately light up in both colors to honor the eve of the contest.

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