July 29, 2009
At SEC Media Days, coaches usually select two players, one on each side of the ball, to accompany them to Birmingham. The players are usually 1) seniors, 2) important to the success of the team, and 3) media savvy enough not to provide a heaping pile of rage fuel to modivate the opposition. Mike Gundy makes his selections based on something else evidently.
At the Big 12 Media Days, Andre Sexton, OSU's strongside linebacker, discussed the Cowboy's trip to Athens in 2007. The Pokes got a little intimidated by the atmosphere and it showed. The Dawgs trucked the Cowboys 35-14 and were kneeling down on OSU's one yard line at the final horn. They weren't ready for the big leagues then, but now Sexton thinks their hype is more deserved. “Now we know,” said Sexton, a senior OSU linebacker, “Georgia's the one that has to be scared. Not us.”
The Senator ran across this way before I did, but I just wanted to note that Okie State thinks you should be scared. Really? Based on what, one win against a top 20 opponent since 2005? Hey, look, I get it. Okie State has some legitimate reasons to be very excited right now. They have a lot of very talented players and are primed for a breakthrough year. UGA should absolutely respect the Pokes and I'm certainly not stating that UGA is going to roll OSU. But, we should be afraid?
Speaking from experience here, don't get too caught up in your own hype. Hype is freely given, but respect, much less fear, is earned through wins, not the mere promise of wins.