STILLWATER, Okla. —
It’s been a question that’s been on Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy’s mind since the start of spring ball. Who would replace Cooper Bassett and Nigel Nicholas at defensive end this season for the Cowboys?
And while Gundy may not have an answer to that question yet, the picture became a little clearer after the first scrimmage of fall camp inside the new Sherman Smith Training Center.
“We made some strides at the defensive end spot,” Gundy said. “Guys made plays. I thought they all played very well — better than what I would have thought for the first scrimmage.
“We always try to find four — two deep — and I know those guys were in there. I just liked their effort. They haven’t arrived, don’t get me wrong. But I told you guys in the spring and back in the summer that my concern was those two areas. I feel better now about that position than when I did when I was talking to (the media) in Dallas.”
Finding four guys to fill the gaps hasn’t been a problem this fall for the defense, with guys like Tyler Johnson, Trace Clark and a healthy Jimmy Bean returning. But it was a name that may not be as familiar to Cowboy faithful who really stole the show in the scrimmage.
“Tyler Johnson had a good camp, but I was really impressed with Sam Wren,” Oklahoma State defensive coordinator Glenn Spencer said. “Sam really has a great takeoff and a great lean. He can really get on the edge fast. He’s a quick-twitch guy. It’s just one day and it’s over, but Sam’s done a nice job.”
“It was a continuation,” Joe Bob Clements said. “Sam Wren continues to make plays and impress us.”