Cowboy-Bobcat Notes: Captains Chosen

OSU head coach Mike Gundy announced to the team Sunday night the captains for the 2005 season. Veteran tight end turned offensive tackle Charlie Johnson is the offensive captain. Senior strong safety Jamie Thompson is the defensive captain, and senior special teams performer Chase Holland is the special teams captain. That is a great honor for the former Oklahoma City Heritage Hall quarterback who also backs up at safety on defense.

Junior offensive tackle Corey Hilliard was the only player on the team who was impacted by Hurricane Katrina. The Category 5 storm blew in off the Gulf of Mexico early Monday morning, and while it veered slightly to the east still pounded the city of New Orleans very hard, even damaging the roof of the Superdome where many residents had gone for shelter.

Hilliard, who is from New Orleans and graduated from Jesuit High School in New Orleans, told Mike Baldwin of The Daily Oklahoman that his family - including aunts and uncles and cousins - had all vacated the city and went to Baton Rouge. Hilliard was able to reach his father by cell phone and found out family members were OK. His biggest concern now is how his family's home fared in the storm. The answer may have to wait a day or two.

SCOUTING REPORT: MONTANA STATE The Bobcats are coming off a 6-5 season in which they were hammered in their final three games of last season - losing 38-28 to Sacramento State, 51-44 to Eastern Washington at home, and closing out with a 38-22 loss to archrival Montana.

Head coach Mike Kramer explains that with returning All-Big Sky quarterback Travis Lulay and a trio of talented receivers and a solid running back that the MSU offense is pretty good. However, the defense has been reworked with the hope it will be vastly improved.

"We feel pretty confident that we have finally ascended to a level physically where it kind of matches our mental aspirations," said Kramer of his team physically. "We feature a couple of guys in the offense that could be NFL guys. Jeff Bolton, one of our offensive linemen, and, of course, Travis Lulay our quarterback has a shot to play. Rick Gatewood, a wide receiver for us, caught 235 yards worth of passes in our archrival game last year at the end of the season and he will be a senior this season.

"(We have) a couple of Washington State recruits, kids out of the Pac-10, Javon Miller and Tremayne Murray, in our receiving corps, and then Michael Bass transferred in from the University of Hawaii., so we've got a couple of guys that have lined up in the great pampillions in college football and they kind of have an idea of what a game like this means and what it can mean in the measure of a team.

"Our major concern on our team, and not just in regard to the Cowboys, is the defense and our defense is making the transition to a little bigger, more physical defense instead of a defense just based on speed. Our down front guys are going to be relatively new and they have an arduous task ahead of them because the Cowboys have a really nice offensive front. They return a lot of guys that have experience and know what they are doing. It will be the most severe test that our defense, and the front seven, face all year. We're climbing a mountain but we get dropped off at the top to begin with."

Kramer is hoping his team will make the game competitive as long as possible, and little successes in the game will give signs that the Bobcats can compete for the Big Sky championship. They are ranked 18th preseason in Division I-AA. They have played some Division I competition tough in the past, and this is a group OSU does not want to mess around with. Let Montana State hang around long enough and they might think they belong.

GoPokes Top Stories