STILLWATER, Oklahoma - The beginning of August typically signals the beginning of practice for college football teams.

Oklahoma State Head Coach Mike Gundy thinks his bunch is more ahead of schedule than previous years.

Gundy likes his experienced roster, including quarterback Mason Rudolph and running back Chris Carson.

Carson returns as part of a large contingent of running backs, and the addition of Barry J. Sanders adds a much-needed boost to the core. 

Jenks' Dillon Stoner is emerging as a go-to guy at receiver. 

This season, the cowboys are a solid mix of returners and newcomers.

It was the first day but the cowboys like where they are.

"He's got a lot more faith in us, and he's kind of cut down some practices for us,” said Rudolph. “I think mental reps are just as important as, you know, being out there and doing it physically, so I'm already excited and getting out there today was really fun."

"We have a bunch of people leading and a bunch of younger guys showing people the ropes and just becoming active leaders on the team,” added junior wide receiver James Washington. “I think we're doing pretty good."         

Although the Cowboys looked good, they didn't look as good as Gundy's mullet.

"I haven't been around much, enough to get a haircut, so I thought I'd let it grow," said Gundy. "At least I shaved though."

Rudolph and Washington are fans of their coach's hair style.

"Yeah I don't if the barber is out of town or what, but he's enjoying it," said Rudolph. "He's loving it. I hope he keeps growing it."

Washington added, "I think it looks good on him. He's talking about putting a perm on it, so I don't know. We'll see what he does with that."