Cowboy Football Practice: Day 2 Notes

Dale Patterson, assistant director of football operations, and Robert Matthews, coordinator of football operations, were busy Friday serving as tour guides as three prospective recruits, two seniors-to-be and one soon-to-be junior, were in Sillwater. The prospects all toured the facilities and watched plenty of practice.

Midwest City (Okla.) Carl Albert junior David Oku rushed for 1,462 yards and 19 touchdowns on 179 carries last season in helping the Titans to the Class 5A stat championship. The small, but powerful Oku is considered a top prospect in Oklahoma and one of the top running backs in the nation for the 2009 recruiting class. He has said Oklahoma State, which has offered, is his favorite, but he is also drawing attention from the likes of Michigan and Penn State. Oku was there Friday with his girlfriend.

John Steel is a 6-5, 225-pound linebacker that will likely be a defensive end in college. Steel, who was accompanied by his father who played at TCU, has 4.7 speed and made 104 tackles last season as a junior. He hasn't been offered but is a legitimate prospect.

C.J. Cox is a 6-0, 196-pound safety out of North Garland in Texas. Cox, who has 4.6 speed, made 70 tackles last season, and this season will also be a featured running back for the Raiders at North Garland. Cox was joined by his father and brother on his unofficial tour of the football facilities and practice.

Special Teams Report
The usual work on PAT and field goals saw returning kicker Jason Ricks stay perfect. Ricks hit all three extra points and field goals of 29, 35, and 47 yards. The second unit, with kicker Dan Bailey, was two for three on PATs and hit a 29-yard field goal with a miss from 35 yards.

The rest of the special teams period, and the later special teams in team, were spent on punt block and punt returns as virtually all of the returning special teams players and newcomers got a lesson and a chance to show off any prowess they have on bloicking punts. Tommy Devereaux, Hubert Anyiam, William Cole, and Josh Cooper worked on returns.

Media Day and Fan Appreciation Day on Saturday
The Cowboy coaches and players will meet the media and have pictures taken in game uniforms starting at 9 a.m. Saturday morning. Head coach Mike Gundy said he will talk to the players and has adopted the theory of his old coach, Pat Jones, when it comes to media day.

"Media day is not a day to go out and see who can be the silliest or who can wear the most wrist bands," said Gundy of Jones' teaching. "Media day is a time to spend time with your team, get your picture taken, enjoy the media, and make good decisions on things that you say."

Fan Appreciation Day can feel like a responsibility, signing all those autographs, but Gundy said his players have grown to enjoy it.

"We have good guys on our team and they enjoy the fans," said Gundy. "They learned to reach out and enjoy the fans versus going the other way and saying they dread doing it for three hours. My dad told me a long time ago that when people quit asking for it (autograph), chances are you are not playing and/or coaching very well. I'm for signing four or five thousand right now."

First Plane To Canton
Mike Gundy will do his interview session with the media first at 9 a.m. and then miss practice later as he will jet along with his wife, Kristen, and Boone Pickens to Canton, Ohio, for Thurman Thomas's induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

"I'm looking forward to being there for Thurman," said Gundy. "It will be a great experience and I hate to miss practice, but Oklahoma State needs to be represented and I'm just proud that I can represent Oklahoma State as a teammate of Thurman and represent our University.

"I am excited about being there and there is supposed to be something we are involved in at 2:30 or 3:00 before the actual ceremony that starts at 6. Whatever we get to do I know it will be a great experience. Kristen and I will enjoy that time. I'm sure on the plane she will be trying to balance the checkbook, and I will be reading the playbook."

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