Reid ready to lead Cowboys

Monday, August 28th 2006, 4:45 pm
By: News On 6

STILLWATER, Okla. (AP) _ D'Juan Woods remembers when Bobby Reid used to walk into the Oklahoma State huddle and tell his teammates how they were going to try to run a certain play.

Now, Reid tells them how they're going to get it done.

``You can tell a difference between the freshman Bobby Reid and Bobby Reid now,'' Woods said Monday at Oklahoma State's weekly media luncheon.

Reid, a sophomore, will open a season as the Cowboys' starter for the first time Saturday night when Oklahoma State hosts Missouri State. The Cowboys are counting on the former Houston high school star to lead them to improvement on their 4-7 record from last season.

His teammates and coaches have already noticed a change.

``When the play is called, he knows what's supposed to happen, so that gives him a lot more confidence in what he's doing, which now he can portray that confidence to the guys in the huddle,'' offensive coordinator Larry Fedora said.

Last season, the Cowboys opened with Donovan Woods at quarterback and Reid spending some time at wide receiver. Reid became the starter in Week 3 but was soon sidelined with a foot injury.

With so much change at quarterback and the team yet to master Fedora's new offense, Oklahoma State struggled to put up points with regularity.

But Reid thinks this season he's better prepared to lead the offense.

``I'm more confident now. I understand things a lot better. I understand where my guys are going to be,'' Reid said. ``Sometimes things might not go as planned but I have confidence in my guys that we're going to get through.''

Cowboys coach Mike Gundy believes Reid simply is gaining maturity as all college players do. But it's a big improvement over last season.

``We didn't have that last year. We had (freshmen) David Washington, Bobby and Michael Hamilton. We sent them out there to play and none of them had never played. You just don't have anybody,'' Gundy said. ``You get in the huddle and guys look around and everybody looks scared.''

Reid recalls feeling nervous ``the whole time'' he was on the field and having ``very few words to say'' in the huddle. D'Juan Woods, the Cowboys' top receiver, said Reid now clearly comes through as the team's leader.

``It's his team,'' D'Juan Woods said. ``He knows that now.''

That confidence couldn't come at a more crucial position for the Cowboys, who ranked last in the Big 12 in scoring and passing yards last season.

``If he doesn't have it, then nobody's probably going to have it because the ball's in his hands every single play,'' Fedora said. ``He has to have it.''

Reid said he doesn't see it as though he's telling his teammates what to do. He's just making sure his teammates are putting themselves in the best position to make a play.

``I've been here for a year and I've got a lot of experience under my belt. I know what to expect and I know what I can get in certain situations,'' Reid said. ``Telling my guys what I want will help me out and help them understand what we need to do.''

Reid said he thinks the Cowboys also have other young leaders developing, including cornerback Perrish Cox, offensive lineman Brady Bond and running back Keith Toston, and he sees the team coming together better this season.

``We're more relaxed now,'' Reid said. ``We've been in the fire before. Now we want to put other teams into the fire and have them feel what we felt last year.''