Ford: Moses Paying For His Mistake

Marshall Moses is expected to play in Oklahoma State's Big 12 opener against Texas Tech on Saturday night after being suspended from playing Tuesday night against Coppin State, head coach Travis Ford said after the 79-61 victory. The 6-foot-6 junior forward sat on the Cowboys' bench in street clothes serving a one-game suspension following his arrest early Monday morning on marijuana drug charges.

"I think so. We're kind of taking it one day at a time," Ford said when asked in the post-game news conference whether Moses would return to play against Texas Tech. "(He'll play) if he's got any legs left after what he's going through."

Moses is OSU's leading rebounder (10.2 per game) and third-leading scorer (11.2).

Ford says that he's aware some Cowboy fans believe that Moses deserves more than a one-game suspension but disagrees with those people.

"He probably wishes he was suspended for three games," said an agitated Ford. "I'm around these young men every single day. I know what Marshall Moses is about. I know this is the first thing he's done to get in trouble. I've heard it ... people I guess need something to talk about but they have no idea all that he'll be doing. He'd probably like to be suspended more, let me just tell you.

"If they're thinking I need to suspend him more because he needs to be punished, they don't have to worry about it. They can relax and sleep at night. I don't want to keep them up at night worrying that he's not going to be suspended more, but they can relax and sleep at night.

"Marshall fully understands what he's done. He fully understands it, and he knows where we stand, and he knows his punishment, and he knows that what happens from this day forward … We're dealing with this. I'm not happy about it."

Ford also says it didn't matter that the Cowboys were playing a Coppin State team that had won just five of 11 games entering Tuesday night. "I don't care who was next (on the schedule). He would have been suspended a game, (playing Coppin State) has nothing to do with it."

The second-year head coach says those people who are critical of his handling of the situation aren't around the Cowboys each and every day.

"They need to walk in our shoes a little bit. We've got to deal with these young men every day. It's a difficult decision when you start trying to figure out what you're going to do with guys as far as punishments. There's other things I've had to do … guys have done things that people don't know about.

"We're dealing with it, believe me. We're doing everything we can to punish him enough to make him not want to do it again, but our job is to make sure that he learns his lesson. That's what it's about. To suspend him one game or 10 games … it's not like I made a quick decision. I thought about it. I'm the one that went and got him out (of jail), and sat there with him.

"I'll tell you, Marshall has come a long way. There's no question. I've been around this kid for a long time. Am I disappointed in him? He knows I am, and he feels bad about it. So hopefully, as I've told him, you can make a negative into a positive the best way you can. We're mentoring him and doing some things to hopefully make him a better person, to hold him accountable for his mistakes. I can guarantee you 100 percent it's being done.

"The word family when you're around teams is used very loosely all the time. I look at it as these are my kids. When I got the phone call I went straight there immediately. I wanted him to know that he was going to be held accountable by me, but also we're going to support him. He's hearing everything else that everyone else is hearing … I told him I'm not going to throw you out into the middle of the sea and let you swim by yourself. We're going to make you learn your lesson, and you need to become a better person because of this. There's no excuse for what he did, he just needs to learn from it."

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