Stillwater News Press

Sports

August 12, 2012

Offense rolls in Oklahoma State football's first scrimmage

Gundy says Christian Littlehead still participating with squad.

STILLWATER, Okla. — Defense may be what carries the Oklahoma State football team this year, but in the team’s first fall scrimmage Saturday the defense played second-fiddle.

According to Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy, it was the offense — under the leadership of true freshman quarterback Wes Lunt — that was the highlight in a 115-play scrimmage on the OSU practice field.

“The offense was very effective today,” Gundy said. “The defense gave up too many big plays. Though the defense did rally a little bit late there and force some turnovers.”

As for Lunt, the 18-year-old who is trying to replace a 28-year-old first-round draft pick in Brandon Weeden, Gundy was happy to see the freshman have a better understanding the offensive scheme.

“He will still go through some growing pains,” Gundy said, “but I was pleased with him and how he handled our offense.”

Offensive coordinator Todd Monken said it’s Lunt’s grasp of the offense that has really progressed since the 6-foot-4, 211-pound freshman from Rochester, Ill., showed up for camp in the spring.

“The improvement is in the process — just the understanding of how we operate,” Monken said. “He’s going to throw it accurately, he’s going to have pocket presence. It’s just does he really understand how to get everybody lined up and when we want to go fast, goes fast and knows where we want our players to be.”

Gundy said he was also impressed with Lunt’s mechanics throwing the ball.

“I thought he released the ball well in throwing lanes and got the ball up high,” Gundy said. “I believe he only had one ball knocked down — and our defensive line has been very good at knocking balls down in the last year or two, and even in the spring.”

While the defense forced some turnovers late in the scrimmage, defensive coordinator Bill Young still wasn’t happy with the amount of turnovers his defense came away with.

“We got three turnovers and our goal is to get three in a game — but that total was for both teams,” Young said. “We were playing both sides, so we should have had six turnovers. So we’re not real excited with how many we got. We’ve got to keep working on it.”

The Cowboy defense, which led the nation in takeaways in last year’s record-setting season, will have a week to work on things before OSU holds its second scrimmage.

“We have a laundry list of things to improve on — we made a lot of mistakes,” Young said. “... It’s the first time we really extended our players. We’d been going five-play racks and now all of a sudden, if they don’t stop the offense they get 10 to 15 plays in which was nice to see how they react.”

Littlehead still working with team

Gundy discussed the status of defensive tackle Christian Littlehead following the scrimmage. Littlehead was charged with misdemeanor assault and battery in Cherokee County.

“We have to gather information and those are very difficult situations for everybody,” Gundy said. “But I have to get all the information before I can move forward. At a particular point in time that falls on my plate and I’ll have to make a decision based on the information I have in what direction we go.”

Gundy said Littlehead is still with the team and worked out with the squad during Saturday’s scrimmage.

“I’ve always followed the policy that guys are relatively innocent until proven guilty,” Gundy said. “And that’s the only thing we can do things. Oklahoma State people have to trust that once I get all the information, I’m going to do what’s best for this school. But I can’t always just assume somebody is guilty until I gather all the information.”

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