No. 12 Oklahoma St tries to shift focus to Iowa State
STILLWATER, Okla. (AP) — The players for No. 12 Oklahoma State don’t have any time to feel sorry for themselves.
Following a demoralizing 62-52 loss at home to rival Oklahoma, the Cowboys have another strong Big 12 opponent on the schedule Saturday. The Cowboys (7-2, 4-2 Big 12, No. 11 CFP) need to forget about their previous gam and prepare to go on the road against No. 24 Iowa State (6-3, 4-2, No. 15 CFP).
“I told the guys, ‘If we would have hit the last pass and won the game, you got to get over it to get ready for the next team,’” Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy said Monday. “My point is, you guys got to get back to work, got to get over it. I don’t want to hear anything about a throw, I don’t want to hear anything about a dropped coverage, I don’t want to hear anything about tangled up and falling down and giving them a big play.”
While Gundy believes that putting that performance in the rear-view mirror would have been important win or lose, it will be especially crucial for the defense, which surrendered a school-record 785 yards to Oklahoma, shattering the previous mark of 718 by Texas Tech in 2007. The Cowboys also set dubious records by allowing an average of 10.3 yards per play and 16.6 yards per pass attempt.
“This one obviously stings, but like Coach Gundy was telling us, we can’t let it fester, because it will affect us in getting ready for Iowa State,” said senior linebacker Chad Whitener, whose interception on the goal line with 2:59 remaining and Oklahoma leading 55-52 set up OSU for their final offensive drive that could have won the game. “Ames isn’t an easy place to play, so we just need to go out there and be ready to learn from our mistakes. We have to really take advantage of the time that we have to prepare and get ready for another week.”
“The mindset doesn’t change at all,” added sophomore defensive end Jordan Brailford, who recorded six tackles, including 3.0 for a loss and 0.5 sacks, on Saturday. “We always come back ready to go. We always go out there, practice hard and focus on getting ready for the next opponent.”
Gundy will also be relying on his senior leadership group to keep hammering that point home.
“I think leadership is going to be huge this week,” said senior center Brad Lundblade. “It takes more leadership after you lose than it does after you win, honestly. We have great leadership and all different types of leaders in all of the different position groups, so I have no doubt that we’ll be ready to go next week.”
Gundy considers Iowa State yet another good opponent that will challenge his team.
The Cyclones had won four straight, including wins over league leaders Oklahoma and TCU, before losing to West Virginia 20-16.
“You shoot them straight, tell them the way it is,” Gundy said of the message to his team. ”‘I wish you had a week off to feel sorry for yourself for a couple of days, but I’ve got news for you. You better get right, you better get ready to play, you’re going up to play a team that’s a legitimate top 20 team in my opinion and they’ve played extremely well at home. They might not look as flashy as some of the other teams you’ve played, with skill that goes all over the place, but you’re going to see a team that doesn’t make a lot of mistakes.’”
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