Cowboys see challenge in Ole Miss

Oklahoma State reported to New Orleans Saturday to begin on-site preparations for its Jan. 1 showdown with Ole Miss in the Sugar Bowl.

Mike Gundy:

Opening statement:

“Our football team, our staff and our university are excited to play in a game against Ole Miss. We think it’s a good matchup. We’re looking forward to eating some good food and having some good practices to get ready for the game in a week.”

On the level of urgency:

“There is always a sense of urgency to play well. We want to prepare and compete and try to be successful in every game. The last two games we did not play as well as we wanted to but we have had a great two weeks of practice and are looking to continue that with our practices this week.”

On Ole Miss:

“We think Ole Miss is a very good football team. Defensively, they’re fast and big up front. Their quarterback is very competitive and has had success with some great wideouts.”

On Oklahoma State:

“We need to play well in all three phases. I’m excited to see our defense compete. We’ve worked hard the last couple of weeks and I think we will be fresh. Offensively, it is going to be interesting to see what we come up with, particularly with the possibility of playing two quarterbacks.”

On the season: 

“I’ve been very proud of our players and our coaches in the way that we have operated this season, we have had a tremendous year and have been very successful. There are not very many teams that have competed and got to double-digit victories so it has been an interesting year. Each season is different and this is a memorable one.”

DE Blake Jarwin:

On the week ahead:

“We all know why we’re coming down here. We played really hard this year; we’ve come this far. The ultimate goal is to win the Sugar Bowl, but have a good time at the same time. But definitely, we’re all responsible adults and need to act like that.”

On coming back from injury:

“I wasn’t told immediately, but I was told to be optimistic. About a week later, I found out I would stay on schedule. I’m excited to be here in New Orleans and playing in a bowl game.

On Ole Miss:

“They play very physical. They’re a very physical team. They play with a lot of attitude and ferocity. We got to come out at the beginning and play our best ball at the start.”

On coach Gundy:

“He’s been here for quite a while now. He’s always encouraging. I’m excited to play for him in the bowl game.”

On the importance of win No. 11:

“Only a few Oklahoma State teams have had the opportunity to be here and go against a team like Ole Miss, so to get to 11 is a great achievement in my mind. I hope it happens.”

WR David Glidden:

On if the Sugar Bowl is a redemption game:

“I wouldn’t say this is a redemption game but we definitely have something to prove. The way we ended last year is kind of the note we want to go out on this year. Again, I don’t know if I would call it a redemption game but we do want to prove ourselves a little more than (we did) in the last two games.”

On if if the Sugar Bowl is a bounce-back game after losing regular season finale:

“Not at all. That game obviously did not go the way we wanted it to, so for that we have a lot of guys that are very competitive on this team that go to work every day when we go to practice. For me, I could see the intensity in the guys, they want to go out there and make their marks and get ready for this game.”

On the team’s mindset:

“It’s one of those deals where everybody is just focused. We come down here after what happened in the last two games and we want to prove ourselves. We want to show that this team is a lot better than that. Outside factors are something our team has dealt with all year and I think we have done a great job. The leadership, the older guys in the locker room have definitely stuck together, so I don’t see outside distractions being a problem. This a very mature football team.”

On New Orleans native Jalen McClesky:

“He’s a very talented player, an explosive kid. He’s obviously very fast, and that is how we use him. He is a really good kid and he just likes to go out and play football. Anytime you ask him to do something he does it and he takes coaching very well. I’m really happy for him that he gets to come back and play in his hometown.” 

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