Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy and selected members of the football team visited with the media Tuesday in Boone Pickens Stadium to preview the Cowboys' Bedlam matchup at Oklahoma. Their comments:
Head Coach Mike Gundy
"Last week, we worked out on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. We were off Thursday, off Saturday and back to work on Sunday. We were off yesterday and back to work today. We're looking forward to this week's preparation. The players' enthusiasm has been good. Practices have been good. We have both quarterbacks that are healthy and practicing, getting equal reps. We'll make a game-time decision on which quarterback we'll end up playing; one that we feel gives us the best chance to win after this weeks' practices. We want to be fair to both practices. We're in good shape with injuries, so we're just looking forward to getting out there and practicing."
On how beneficial the extra practices the team would get with a bowl game are:
"We get 11 (practices). There isn't as much long term development that goes on (in those practices) for us. It's been more game-planning, but it's certainly good. We get 15 minutes or so of work with the young players."
On preparing for Bedlam games:
"Well, for me, the preparation doesn't really change during the week. I think that it's obviously a big game for the people in this state without pro football being here. You either wear orange or red during the week. For me, we have to prepare and go play a game just like we have every other year that we've played them."
On if there are any nerves for the young players playing in their first Bedlam game:
"I don't think so. I think that they have played in big games now. They've played in big games that were on national TV and they've played teams that are highly-ranked. I think because of the exposure that goes on, that is unlike how it used to be, there aren't really nerves involved like there were before all of the coverage and exposure that college football has now."
On Oklahoma running back Semaje Perine:
"I think he's a really good back. I've said this, and I'll say it again: I think he's very mature and very strong. He runs low to the ground and gets his pads down. He runs through tackles and his yards after contact is good."
On defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah:
"He's doing great. He's mature and grown up. He's come in as a guy that's gotten really big, he's committed to the game and he's playing hard. He's been a really good football player for us. He's been a good leader. He's been injured a little bit during the season. He's fought through pain and competed. He's been a bright spot for us."
Defensive Coordinator Glenn Spencer
On putting pressure on the quarterback:
"I think you have to mix it up. He's had some difficult situations to throw in. You can't do the same thing every single time. You've got to mix it up."
On Samaje Perine:
"It's nice for them to be able to control a game by moving the chains. I think giving it to him does everything. It helps out their defense and special teams. He gives them a mentality that they can control the game. I've got a lot of respect for him"
On preparing for the Oklahoma running game:
"They are hard to tackle and they do a good job schematically. I mean, they're running option football. We have different aspects that we have to defend."
Offensive Coordinator Mike Yurcich
On Mason Rudolph's performance against Baylor:
"He did a good job of maintaining poise. Being on the road like that for the first time in the Big 12, he didn't really know what to expect. We knew that he was a confident young man, but to see it in the lights was a really good thing."
On Mason Rudolph's adjustments:
"It's good. You sure as heck want to gain the confidence of your teammates and he has done that."
On the challenge of facing the Oklahoma defensive front:
"They're good. They get up the field, they have linebackers that can drop back and rush. They can go man; they can go zone. They do a good job of mixing things up from a personnel point."
Fullback Teddy Johnson
On preparing for OU:
“This game is very special. As far as preparation, we aren't straying far from what we usually do. We're watching film and figuring out what we can take advantage of and what we need to look out for. Nothing too different. We're doing what we've been doing.”
On the team's attitude:
“You can look around and tell the demeanor of people by looking in their eyes. We do know that this game is big and I can see the fire in a lot of their eyes, especially the seniors because this is their last opportunity to go out there and show themselves.”
On what a win over OU would do for fans:
“Bedlam is a huge deal in the state of Oklahoma. If we can pull off a victory over OU, I think a lot of people would appreciate that and look upon the program highly.”
Tight End Jeremy Seaton
On how this Bedlam game feels compared to others:
“It's for sure a different game than what it has been in the past. We need this game to become bowl eligible so it definitely means a little more. When we go in for preparation, it's the same as any other week. We're just trying to win this weekend.”
On OU's defense:
“They're a great team. They have a bunch of players that try to confuse you. Doing our assignments is really what we need to do, and we're going to try to do that this weekend.”
On playing with Mason Rudolph:
“He came in, commanded and acted like he had been there all season. He really treated himself like he was a veteran and had a strong sense of authority. He definitely stepped up for the game, and I was really impressed with him.”
Linebacker Ryan Simmons
On facing Oklahoma quarterback Cody Thomas:
"He's another quarterback we have to go against and they have a lot of weapons on offense and it's not just him. We have to stop the run, that's the main thing, and get them uncomfortable so they can be more one sided and keep them questioning what we're doing and just making stops for our offense."
On stopping the Oklahoma running game:
"Well, [Samaje Perine] is a physical runner. They have a great offensive line. They are NFL size. We just have to execute great gap control, seeing our reads and executing. That's the main thing we need to do is execute our game plan, not worry about anything else and just do our job."
On limiting Perine's yards after contact:
"He's physical, which is important with any running back. With a guy like him, he's low to the ground, has good agility, good strength and could move well. You just have to be sound in your tackling and be sound in your reads and just get to the ball fast and make him not as effective as he's been the past few weeks."
Defensive End Emmanuel Ogbah
On his success this year:
"The key to my success is faith in God and just practice and hard work, because it wasn't easy coming into the season. I had a mindset that I had to do good things to help my defense out."
On leading the Big 12 in sacks:
"I worked hard to get this, so I'm really not surprised that I'm here because a lot of hard work went into that."
On stopping the Oklahoma running game:
"It's going to take the whole defense to run to the ball and bring the guy down. (Perine) is a big back and good player, so we'll just have to run to the ball."
Cornerback Kevin Peterson
On what this game means to him:
"It's huge. I had committed to Oklahoma my senior year, then I came here. I've kind of just bonded to the program, it's really more what I thought was more personal for me. A bunch of guys know the rivalry because they have been here in years past and know how big of a game it's going to be, and so we've got to get everybody's mind set. It's going to be a battle from snap one to the last snap. It's going to be really good to see how we can figure them out the whole game."
On differences between OSU and OU:
"There's not a whole lot of difference. The tradition here at OSU and the tradition at OU in the past has probably been different, but now we're both competing at really high levels. It's just more of the fan base and the community as well. (OSU) feels like more of a family program."
On David Glidden's recent success:
"He is one of the hardest workers you'll see. We go out there and practice and he never has a down day. He's out there telling everybody, ‘We need to do this; we need to pick it up,' or talk a little smack to you to make sure everyone is rousing us up. He's just really the guy, you need somebody to trust, it's that guy. He's going to do his routes the way he does it in practice and in the game."