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Oklahoma State Football

Gundy and Sanders on Same Page with QB Play

July 19, 2021

STILLWATER – Since fall camp for the Cowboys doesn’t start until players report on Aug. 5 and practice commences on Aug. 6, we’re going to have plenty of time for talk season coming off the Big 12 Football Media Days last week. If you are looking for the major topic of conversation with regard to Oklahoma State, outside of Mike Gundy’s haircut and the status of the mullet, then it is quarterback play and how Spencer Sanders will play this upcoming season.

First, you have to understand what Oklahoma State asks of its’ quarterback. If you don’t have an understanding of that then it is impossible to line up the expectations and how prepared Sanders or any other quarterback on the roster can match up with the demands. The good thing that clearly came out of Big 12 Football Media Days is that head coach Mike Gundy and Sanders are clearly on the same page with that subject.

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Gundy was relaxed in answering questions, even those about Sanders.

“You’ve been following us for a hundred years, so you know us. What is good quarterback play? Good quarterback play is our quarterback distributing the ball like we ask him to do, and not do too much,” Gundy stated. “A lot of guys have played quarterback for us very well. Even the one year, Corndog (Taylor Cornelius) played for us he distributed the ball the way we asked him to. If Spencer does that (then) I think he has improved more in the two months of spring ball than he has in two years. Tim Rattay has been fabulous with him.”

You see the misnomer is that Spencer has to make plays, but the truth is he has to be the football equivalent of a good point guard. There are all kinds of analogies these days of football to basketball. The spread offense is kind of a basketball on grass. In one way it is, the quarterback is the point guard.

Offensive coordinator Kasey Dunn and the staff isn’t asking Sanders to make all the plays. They are asking him to get the ball into the hands of offensive teammates that will make plays. Sometimes, Sanders will be that guy, but not all of the time, not close.

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Spring was a litmus test for Sanders and he passed with that 6-for-6 passing and his patience on that last scoring drive.

“You are not going to make every third and 20, every third and 10, every third and five, even every third and one because nobody is perfect and you just keep moving on,” Spencer said of what seems to be his new adopted mental outlook. “Anybody can say anything. You can bash me for not completing a ball on third down, but I come back and do it again. I have patience and it’s okay. I have a one play mentality.”

This season there is no “bell cow” wide receiver like Tylan Wallace, but there are many receivers that are capable including Tay Martin, who is coming back to enhance his NFL potential. Outside there are all kinds of possibilities and some we haven’t seen reach their peak such as veteran Braydon Johnson, emerging Rashod Owens, and highly regarded but injured Langston Anderson. Reliable Cale Cabbiness could be in the rotation. Electric Brennan Presley is going to be in the slot and could be joined by youngster John Paul Richardson. Speaking of youngsters, twins Blaine and Bryson Green and Norman’s Jaden Bray, who starred in the spring game are all showing signs of being prepared to play.

In the backfield there are four running backs with LD Brown, Dezmon Jackson, Dominic Richardson, and Jaylen Warren all more than capable. In fact, they are a major reason to be excited about the offense. Spencer’s job is to pick the one that is the best option on each play to make it work.

The spring was spent on minimizing mistakes, improve footwork, improve decisions, and get to the right option quickly and efficiently. Just what Mike Gundy was talking about.

“Not so much pressure, but motivation,” Sanders said of the talk about the importance of him being improved and better this season. “I would say just live up to the hype, live up to the motivation. I’m not the one to talk too much about it. I don’t like throwing shots at anybody. I like keeping my head down and work and then let my work do the talking.”

Gundy sounds confident and Sanders does as well, so then it gets simple with the other aspects of the game.

“We stay healthy up front,” Gundy continued. “We will run and tackle well on defense and if we do that then we will play better than some people are anticipating based on what I’m hearing.”

Discussion from...

Gundy and Sanders on Same Page with QB Play

994 Views | 3 Replies | Last: 3 mo ago by CowboyKip
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That hopefully means they're gonna let SS throw more across the middle. Slants, TE look-ins, curls....something different please!
Zach Lancaster
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Give me all the down-the-field bombs
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Zach, you can't go over the top until the D is looking short and over the middle. Weeden and Mason were cutting them up underneath and then went over the top.
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