Transfers Are Blending In Well

There is always a large contingent of fans seeking autographs on Fan Appreciation Day asking veteran players like a J.W. Walsh, Brandon Sheperd, Ryan Simmons or Kevin Peterson, or from freshmen like Jeff Carr or defensive tackle Darrion Daniels, who made his commitment on national cable television. Some fans, especially those that follow recruiting, are always looking for that next big thing.

The truth of the matter is few freshmen will play. I think the aforementioned Carr will get looks at punt and kickoff returns, as maybe will speedster safety Bryce Balous. Also, with the injury to defensive tackle Vili Leveni, freshmen Darrion Daniels and Taaj Bakari will get looks as a backup at that position.

Thanks now to a second year NCAA rule relaxing the contact to allow some in the summer between players, including newcomers, and coaches there is some advancement beyond strength and conditioning and player-led workouts that can help with the acclimation and knowledge for new players to help them be more ready for fall camp and contributing right away.

Look for the biggest contributors of the newcomers to be two older players in junior college running back Chris Carson and super senior transfer Michael Hunter (pictured above last season while at Indiana).

"We're excited about having those guys in there like Chris Carson, Michael Hunter and Jordan Burton, who was here with us all through the spring," slot receiver and senior David Glidden said at Big 12 Media Days. "Those guys fit right in, they are willing to learn, they are accepting their roles, and they are competing.

"It is exciting because it's summer and they are in there watching film, going to all the meetings and you can tell they want to win and have the right mindset."

Carson, who was a man among boys at Butler County Community College, put a photo out on his Twitter account this week that shows biceps that not only rival but may exceed those of former Cowboys running back Jeremy Smith. They are massive and the word of his exploits in the weight room are rapidly becoming favorites of the summer workout lore that circulates right around this time, the close of the summer workouts, each year.

It is worth noting that Rennie Childs, the incumbent and the No. 1 running back on the depth chart, is getting the very same kind of praise for his work during the summer. That all builds up a fun to watch, and valuable to improve competition in August for the reps and carries at running back.

As for Hunter, who is 6-0, 195 pounds and a two-year starter in the Big 10 at Indiana, I've watching him in practice and he has been seamless in his transition to Oklahoma State. His skills in covering and his fundamentals in back pedal, hip turn, positioning, and looking back to play the ball is very good. He will be a definite candidate to start at cornerback.

"Definitely, the thing about Michael Hunter is that he is really smart," Peterson said with excitement in his voice. "He knows concepts and you can tell that he has really been able to play.

"When people first get here you feel like you really don't know who they are and how they are going to be. You don't have to explain anything to him. He knows and all you have to do is tell him what the coverage is going to be and he knows exactly what to do. He plays hard and he does it relentlessly.

He came in really strong and we all know that we are competing for the same spots and you would think there might be some awkwardness but there is nothing like that at all," Peterson added

Hunter's arrival has made the corner position very competitive and also a real strength depth-wise in a league that challenges the position with a multitude of receivers and, in many cases such as Baylor, the attempt to rotate and sub those receivers so as to match up fresh legs with worn out legs from consecutive vertical routes.

Hunter, along with Peterson, Ashton Lampkin, Ramon Richards, Darius Curry, and more, give the Cowboys instant reserves that can hang with the top receivers in the Big 12.

"It's amazing. It's like taking a time out," Peterson explained. "You can take a time out after three deep balls and you are fine. This will be like taking a time out and being able to have your legs rested and other guys come in there will even things up and it is great for our defense."

The more the merrier. Also, just like Carson and Chiles pushing each other on offense there will be five or six corners really pushing each other on defense. I believe emphatically that competition makes players better, so those two positions have a chance to be really good coming out of fall camp and heading to Central Michigan.


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