Reid, Cowboys deal with first loss

Monday, September 25th 2006, 6:20 am
By: News On 6

STILLWATER, Okla. (AP) _ Bobby Reid isn't ready to put Oklahoma State's first loss in the past yet.

In a return to his hometown, Reid had the third-best game in Cowboys history in terms of total offense but it still wasn't enough to prevent a 34-25 win by Houston on Saturday night.

Coaches have told Reid and the rest of the team to let bygones be bygones, but it's not that simple for the Cowboys' quarterback.

``It's not like an on-off switch. I don't just turn it off and I'm done with it,'' said Reid, who had 366 yards of total offense in the game. ``I still think about the throws I could have made, the couple times my guys dropped the ball I could've made it easier.''

Reid, a sophomore, threw for 281 yards and three touchdowns and ran for 85 yards on seven carries in the best game of his career. Only current Cowboys coach Mike Gundy, who had 434 yards against Kansas in 1989, and Don Babers, who had 371 yards against Detroit in 1951, have had more total offense in a game.

But it was still a loss.

``I think it'll be something that I carry with me. I'm not going to sit and dwell on `I could have done this, I should have done this.' Just `We lost,''' Reid said. ``I'm not much of a big-time loser, me personally, and I don't think none of my guys are big-time losers. I'll just carry that with me in the back of my mind, and that's just going to make me more hungry and work harder.''

It's the second straight season the Cowboys have started 3-0 before a humbling setback. Last year, Oklahoma State won its three nonconference games and then got shutout 34-0 in its Big 12 opener against Colorado.

``Right now, this team is real, real pissed off about what happened and I think we're going to work a little harder than we have before,'' Reid said.

``Guys down here are focused now,'' he added. ``We see that it's not going to be easy again. We've just got to keep fighting.''

Gundy said his staff had to console some players in the locker room who ``were upset because they wanted to win that game.''

``It was hard on those guys to lose that game, but the flip side of that is as coach and as a player in this business, it's over with and you get up and go to school, coaches come up and we start working on our next opponent, and that's the way it is,'' Gundy said. ``You put a smile on your face and you go full speed ahead.''

A bye this week gives the Cowboys two weeks to prepare for their Big 12 opener at Kansas State on Oct. 7.

Gundy said Houston exposed the Cowboys' young secondary and also was able to capitalize on poor tackling, but he thinks the defense can be competitive in the Big 12.

``It's too early for me to say average, good, great, bad but we've got guys that can run and certainly tackle a lot better than they did. That's a fact. And they'll have to, because the people we're playing are only going to get better,'' Gundy said.

On offense, Gundy said Oklahoma State needs to get better blocking from its offensive line and establish a run game, but he also sees areas where Reid can improve.

Altogether, Gundy has a better feeling about this team than last year's squad, which lost seven of its last eight games to finish 4-7.

``This is a different football team. This team has more confidence. They're a better football team,'' Gundy said. ``I've said all along throughout the first three games that we haven't been tested. So we have to reach down deep and see what we're made of. But there's more talent out there, we're further along in the system, their attitude's good. These guys are resilient.''

And unlike last year, their starting quarterback is healthy and dead set on avoiding another loss.

``We've got our loss under our belt,'' Reid said. ``Now we know what it feels like and I know none of the guys want to feel that way again.''