Cowboy Preseason Camp: Day 6 PM

STILLWATER – The Cowboys closed out the first day of two-a-days and the seventh practice overall on Tuesday night by pressing a little. Oklahoma State head coach Mike Gundy said he sensed the weather conditions were a little less extreme with cloud cover moving in with a cool front and when the horn signaling the final period of the practice sounded the Cowboys did a little overtime.

There was one newcomer that didn't seem to mind as junior college transfer running back Dantrell Savage capped off a big day for him by breaking loose on the outside and going the distance for a 60-yard touchdown run on the final play of practice.

"They did a nice job and I wanted push them," said Gundy. "We extended them so we went an extra 15 minutes and went live seven or eight plays to see how they would hold up. They did a nice job. You just have to do that because there will be times in the fourth quarter that you will get extended. You don't really tell them when you are going to do it, you just do it. Because we had some cloud cover and it was a little bit cooler it seemed like a good time to do it."

Savage had a huge day as he broke off a couple of long runs in the morning practice. With starting running back Mike Hamilton doing limited practice work because of a sore hamstring, Savage, Julius Crosslin, freshman Keith Toston, and Calvin Roberts got extra work in both practices. Toston showed up more in the morning practice, but in the afternoon workout during the extended team period Savage, Crosslin and Roberts all had their moments.

Crosslin, the Cowboys primary short yardage weapon, had a couple of good runs and also caught a pair of balls out of the backfield. Both passes came from backup quarterback Zac Robinson. Roberts had a good run behind the blocking of guard Noah Franklin and tackle Corey Hilliard on the right side. He also gained close to 10 yards on a trap play up the middle.

It was Savage who broke the most runs as he had three significant carries in the team period. The first came off the right side as he bounced it outside for a sizeable gain. Blocking downfield on the play left guard Steve Denning got into a short fracas with a couple of Cowboy defenders. It was defensive tackle Larry Brown that hung on and made the stop or Savage may have kicked into another gear and been gone. After a pair of back-to-back solid runs, including another play that looked like a repeat from the morning workout where freshman cornerback Perrish Cox came across to make the stop, Savage set sail after making a defender dropping move to get into clear sailing down the sideline. Gundy was asked when you start believing what you are seeing on the practice field will translate to similar results in games.

"Those guys usually show up pretty quick in practice and in games when guys can make people miss and excelerate and are tough enough and durable enough to continue on, kind of like what you are talking about because we're out of shorts now," said Gundy. "It's pretty encouraging. We're going to have a different look with those guys and mix those guys in will give us a different look. He runs a little like Vernand Morency, a little bit more of a burst. They are similar. You don't come out of that junior college system he came out of without being tough."

Sophomore cornerback Jacob Lacey, who is having a tremendous camp according to the coaches and it is visible to the media and fans, said he is a believer in what he sees out of Savage so far.

"Definitely have been impressed," said Lacey. "When Dantrell first got here we were working out here together. We were talking today on the sidelines how he is going to be a change of pace because Mike is kind of big and can run you over, Julius will definitely run you over, Keith (Toston) has that speed, and Dantrell is real shifty and that is why we say he is a change-of-pace guy."

Robinson had a solid afternoon at quarterback with a completion on a boot pass to tight end Paschal Smith and the throws to Crosslin. Starting quarterback Bobby Reid only threw a few passes but one was a huge highlight as he hit senior standout wide receiver D'Juan Woods on a deep slant that Woods turned up field and finished in the end zone.

"He (Reid) actually played pretty good other than seven-on-seven and we put in some new routes and down in the red zone," said Gundy. "He was fine in all of the team drills. That is a lot more important. He threw a couple of picks in seven on because we switched up some routes."

Reid also hit sophomore walk-on fullback Jeremiah Burton out of Enid. Starting fullback John Johnson has also been limited by leg cramps and Burton has jumped in and performed very well at the position.

"I got real comfortable with it," Burton said of moving from linebacker to fullback. "I play better when I'm comfortable."

The coaching staff loves a guy like Burton, who is willing to do whatever it takes, including putting on 10 pounds, to play wherever and contribute to the team. "I gained weight because in the spring I was getting bounced around by linebackers," chuckled Burton. "I am 10 or 15 pounds bigger now."

There were also some defensive highlights in the evening workout including a pair of sacks by the veteran crew up front as defensive tackle Ryan McBean sacked Reid on a bull rush up the middle and wrestler-turned-football-player Steve Mocco sacked Robinson what had to be classified as a coverage sack. Also, Martel Van Zant made a very nice play breaking up a fade route thrown by Robinson and intended for Chijuan Mack.

It is back to one practice on Wednesday for the Cowboys as they will hit the field at 5:45 p.m. for the eighth practice of the 29 allotted to prepare for the Sept. 2 opener with Missouri State.

The first full scrimmage of camp will be Saturday on the practice field at 6 p.m. and it was announced Tuesday by Mike Gundy that it will be open to the public. Fans are encouraged to arrive early as the viewing area is limited. It will be the last open practice of the season.

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