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OSU Football: Week 8 Notebook

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Homecoming week at Oklahoma State showcases campus at its busiest, and that holds true for the football team too. With another off week in the books, Mike Gundy and the Cowboys now begin a second-straight week of preparation for TCU. Gundy and players spoke with the media on Monday to discuss the Horned Frogs and how the season has progressed so far for OSU.

• The Cowboys haven't changed their game plan. "We need to be as sound as possible in the kicking game, limit big plays on defense and take care of the ball on offense," Gundy said.

• Although fans are typically underwhelmed with an 11:00 a.m. kick time, Gundy said he liked it: "I think college football is supposed to be played during the day." OSU will play an early game each of the next two weeks (Oct. 19th vs. TCU and Oct. 26th at Iowa State). The Cowboys also played at 11:00 a.m. against West Virginia.

• Gundy said the defense this season is "the best we've had." The Cowboys rank 26th nationally by allowing 20 points per game and are 19th defensively in yards-per-play allowed with 4.69.

• TCU's defense ranks 18th in yards-per-play at 4.65. "They're in the right spots on defense and they've got some guys that can get to you in a four-man rush," Gundy said. "Their backers understand gap responsibility, their corners are good players and their safeties are good tacklers. They're as physical and as good a defense as anybody we've seen up to this point."

• On the reason behind all the parity in the Big 12, Gundy mentioned three factors: the spread offense, sound play from quarterbacks and the nine-game conference schedules. "The future (of college football) for coaches is a nightmare and for the fans and the media and people who like to watch college football, it's going to be a heck of a deal. Conference play is going to be a battle each week."

• In regards to offensive tempo, coordinator Mike Yurcich explained that his philosophy is based on recognizing and adapting to the defense. "We want to be sound on our assignments and make sure we know where we're going and know the adjustments we have to make based on the defense," Yurcich said. "At times, we need to take our foot off the gas in regards to tempo to do that."

• Defensive coordinator Glenn Spencer added that TCU quarterback Treyvone Boykin has improved since becoming a starter last year. "We got after him pretty good last year, and he was kind of new to his role at the time," Spencer said. "Now, I think it's been a smoother transition for him this year after their starter was hurt before the season. They know what he does well, and I think they've built on that. I think we'll see a lot of similar things this time. They've got new wrinkles, but he's been able to make the throws and put pressure on the defense with the run."

• Safety Daytawion Lowe reiterated Spencer's sentiments on Boykin. "We have to get on him fast, getting a lot of pressure on him," Lowe said. "We have to make him make quick decisions and get the ball out of his hands."

• Linebacker Shaun Lewis compared Boykin to a quarterback the team recently faced. "(Kansas State's Daniel Sams) from last week helped us prepare for Boykin this week," Lewis said. "It's a similar type athlete with the way they can run and spread the field. It's going to be interesting to see how we stack up against Boykin this week."

• Running back Jeremy Smith said the team did something different in practice this week. "We did a lot of one-on-one's, just to keep our minds straight and keep our speed going, which I think was a great idea," the senior said. "We really didn't take a week off because we're still competing against each other."

• Receiver Jhajuan Seales said the Cowboys are looking forward to playing in front of a raucous homecoming crowd. "(Playing in Boone Pickens Staduim for Homecoming) was a great feeling," Seales said. "The crowd was pumped, and it showed how much the fans really love Oklahoma State football."

• Receiver Josh Stewart also had a take on the parity within the conference. "I watched the OU game, the Texas Tech game and the Kansas State versus Baylor game," Stewart said. "The Big 12 is evenly matched. You can win everywhere. We're excited and we're ready to go because last week shows you that anybody can get beat at any time in the Big 12."

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