Cowboys Well Into Summer Workouts

The sun was beating down on the turf of Boone Pickens Stadium on Thursday. It is a little more spongy these days after getting a load of rubber filler that has worked in nicely following the rains of a week ago and the work that has gone in over the last two and a half weeks. We are talking about those "voluntary" workouts that go on in the summer for the members of the Cowboy football program.

The Oklahoma State football team has strength workouts on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday morning. There are conditioning workouts on the same days with stadium steps to be run at 6:30 a.m. on Fridays and the metobolic workouts (football stuff) also on the four-day work schedule.

After making a visit to check out the late afternoon activites, here are some observations.

The quarterbacks are in good shape and Brandon Weeden has done just what head coach Mike Gundy and offensive coordinator Dana Holgorsen expected of him. He is leading the way and running the workouts.

The quarterbacks were the first ones out in the hot sun and worked on drills on their steps and agility in throwing the ball. Weeden has so much zip on the ball.

Freshman Johnny Deaton and redshirt freshman Clint Chelf certainly show the impact of the strength program as both have put on some pounds and done it the right way. Deaton is much stronger looking than when he checked in.

It is easy to see the difference between Deaton and fellow freshman Nathan Sorenson, who just arrived this summer. The lefty is in good shape but will get stronger and catch up with Deaton in time. There is no getting around the warmup period and Sorenson is going through that stage right now.

Another early worker was recently re-instated inside receiver Bo Bowling, who was working early catching footballs in the tunnel underneath the west end zone off the Juggs machine. Bowling is cut like he was previously and seems to have picked up on the route tree quickly and seemed to be in flow in the offense in seven-on-seven and full team.

As expected, Justin Blackmon, Josh Cooper, Tracy Moore, and Michael Harrison all look good catching the ball. Keep an eye on Colton Chelf because he is making plays this summer, just like in the spring.

Hubert Anyiam is going through some of the work, but he is still in a protective boot from his foot surgery. I was told he is ahead of schedule and they plan to get him in the flow of things and, hopefully, into shape in time for fall camp.

The offensive line looks good as a group. Once again, these guys are a bunch of flat bellies as they do not have a lot of spare tires and love handles.

One player that looked like he had made lots of improvement is Brandon Webb. Webb has changed his body some and looked good. The entire group looked to be in good shape. As always, Jonathan Rush and redshirt freshman Parker Graham are very impressive from a physical standpoint.

If you were giving awards based on physical appearance -- this award would be the "king of the beach" or the "first off the bus" awards -- the top two candidates might be running back or returning All-Big 12 fullback Bryant "Stillwater" Ward and defensive end Cooper Bassett. Ward has biceps as big as most people's thighs. He is an extremely strong individual. Bassett is up to 265 pounds and looks like he could be a force at defensive end.

Speaking of the defensive line, it looks good. Defensive tackle Shane Jarka is doing a good job of leading that group and getting help from fellow senior Chis Donaldson. The DeJuan Davis experiment is going well as he is looking more like a defensive lineman.

Of course, a lot of OSU's offensive linemen look like they could be defensive linemen. Anthony Rogers is up to 285 pounds and is working on conditioning and trying to get comfortable with that weight. Davidell Collins is a good looking freshman.

Orie Lemon and Markelle Martin are leading the back end of the defense. The linebackers looked really good as they moved well in pass coverage. Don't be surprised if Justin Gent is not more of a force than many might credit him with being going into the season.

The secondary looks good with Victor Johnson, Daytawion Lowe, Johnny Thomas and Mathies Long all working hard at safety. At the corners Brodrick Brown looks stronger and played well in seven-on-seven.

An observation, this offense is going to really improve the cover skills of the secondary because they get so much practice at it. I know the negative could be work against the run but I really expect the cover skills of Brown, Andrae May, Malcolm Murray, Devin Hedgepeth, and the returning Andrew McGee to greatly improve. It will also help a newcomer to factor earlier like freshman Justin Gilbert out of Huntsville, Texas.

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