Cowboy Practice Report: Day 6

STILLWATER - According to observers, Wednesday morning's practice, the sixth of the preseason fall camp and the second in full pads, was the hottest so far and that is more than believable as head coach Mike Gundy and his staff kept the team out for nearly two hours and 20 minutes. There was plenty of team period built into the practice as offense and defense continued to get a lot of reps.

On offense, coordinator Dana Holgorsen has explained that he only has enough plays to get two quarterbacks work in the 11-on-11 team period, so starter Brandon Weeden is taking 60 to 70 percent of the work and freshman backup Johnny Deaton is taking the rest. That leaves redshirt freshman Clint Chelf, true freshman Nathan Sorenson, and walk-on Brayden Stringer to work drills only.

Sorenson, who was also a baseball standout (drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates this spring) and member of a Class 4A state championship 4x200-meter relay team, is a good athlete and Wednesday he received work at wide receiver.

The 6-foot-3 Sorenson looked comfortable there and seemed to be excited about the opportunity in wanting to get on the field. He continues to work at quarterback and the coaching staff said the move is not permanent as of now.

Gundy was excited about the performance of a veteran wide receiver Isaiah Anderson out of Wichita Falls High School. Anderson, a sophomore, is a speedster that should really enjoy this offense. He had several catches in practice including an impressive deep catch down the middle of the field.

Another player that drew praise from the head coach was "star" linebacker James Thomas out of LaMarque, Texas. The 5-11, 215-pound junior is the starter at the "star," but so many times gets less attention from fans and media with the excitement over freshmen Joe Mitchell and brand new frosh and Texas schoolboy standout Shaun Lewis.

Gundy has been happy with Thomas and has felt he and the linebackers have had a competitive camp. They have as LeRon Furr and Kenny Alexander as backups at weakside are playing hard and making plays as well. Gundy has been happy, overall, with the competitiveness on the field of all the squad in practices so far.

An old Oklahoma State head coach, in fact Mike Gundy's head coach Pat Jones, eyeballed the team on Tuesday in their first workout in pads and had these observations.

GP: What do you think after watching the practice?
PJ: Robert, This is the fifth two-a-day of them that I have seen now and the thing that strikes me is that every year you see them, this is a better looking group athletically. There are kids out here that can run. The offensive linemen are taller looking kids and there are a lot of new faces this year as we know, but from a skill level they continue to really help themselves with an overall squad.

GP: This is an interesting conference this year and I can see you guys at Fox Sports Southwest as having a lot of fun. The star quarterbacks are gone from Texas and OU. Tuberville is in at Texas Tech. A&M has a lot of talent, OSU has a lot of turnover, and Baylor gets Griffin back from injury.
PJ: There is no telling what is going to happen once this thing gets kicked off. You have the high profile guys of Bradford and McCoy gone, Todd Reesing gone from Kansas, and you even have Mike Leach gone. A lot of different story lines are out there. In the South, I still think you have to say you have Oklahoma and Texas and then after that anything can happen. In the North, Nebraska is making a comeback. How far who knows? Missouri should have a good football team. However, there is no telling how things are going to be at the end.

GP: If you are an Oklahoma State fan this season, two games, the games at Boone Pickens Stadium with Texas A&M and Nebraska make it worth buying a season ticket.
PJ: Particularly A&M, those two teams both have a chance to be unbeaten coming in here. I would imagine that if their guys stay healthy then whoever wins that ballgame will be the frontrunner in making a move that is not Oklahoma or Texas but right behind. Both teams have a chance and I look at it as even. That A&M game has the makings of good one. As for Nebraska they could be on a big roll when they come in here.

Jones is taking an active interest in the Cowboys and said he may be back for a scrimmage this weekend. He also seemed to enjoy watching Mike Gundy coach as a head coach that is not calling the offense.

Gundy was more active all over the field and Jones seemed to recognize some aspects of Gundy's coaching that he may have picked up from his old head coach in Jones.

As for the Cowboys they will be back on the practice field Thursday morning and then again on Friday. Friday is the first two-a-days practice day and the team will also work out at 5:30 p.m. On Saturday the Cowboys will hold their first scrimmage of fall camp.

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