Tahlequah Daily Press

Sports

November 14, 2013

All grit for Glidden

Glidden shows you don’t need speed, size to surprise people

STILLWATER — David Glidden is about as unsuspecting as any wide receiver you’ll ever see.

At 5-foot-7 and 185 pounds, the Oklahoma State sophomore doesn’t have the size of a Tracy Moore. Nor does he have the speed of a Josh Stewart.

But there is one thing that Glidden has that separates him from the taller, more athletic receivers: his heart.

“David really hustles,” Oklahoma State offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich said. “He practices really hard. I know he’s had some health issues in the past, but it’s nice to see him out there healthy. From just a fan standpoint, he’s fun to watch.

“He’s seems to be one of them worker bees that’s always hustling and doing whatever he needs to do. He’s a scrapper.”

Calling Glidden scrappy seems fitting, considering how much he’s had to fight just to see the field.

Glidden typically plays backup to Stewart — one of the most explosive weapons in the Oklahoma State arsenal. But when Stewart went down Saturday against Kansas, Glidden — who had all of five catches in his entire career — knew it was his time to shine.

“It was exciting,” Glidden said. “When you’re numbers called, you just want to go out there and make plays for your team. That’s just really all I was trying to do.

“I grew up coming to games and to be able to make plays in front of everyone and hearing the crowd erupt, you could almost say its a dream come true.”

Glidden was certainly living the dream Saturday, catching six pass for 73 yards, including 39-yard pass from Clint Chelf that resulted in him spinning around and awkwardly bounding down near the Oklahoma State goal line.

“Clint threw a great ball,” Glidden said of the play. “I just tried to beat my man and then I didn’t really see that guy until the last second, and supposedly I got flipped. It all happened so fast.”

That it did.

Before Glidden could even realize what was going on the game was over and he was headed back to the locker room.

But that’s where things finally started to settle down and where Glidden began to piece everything together.

“Coming back into the locker room after a game like that when you kind of get your first opportunity, I did think back to the all those times and all the time in the weight room in the spring, so I was excited and grateful for the opportunity,” Glidden said.

All those hours in the sweltering Stillwater summer sun, the early mornings in the weight room or the late nights studying the playbook — it all seemed worth it Saturday.

“Anytime you get to go in the game in front of all those people, it’s what you practice for every week,” Glidden said. “It’s what you go through the offseason and the summer for. I was glad to get the opportunity to make some plays.

“My number was called, and I was just trying to go out there and make plays. Whenever a team expects you to make play, you have to go out there and make them.”

Glidden certain made his fair share of plays Saturday in Stewart’s absence, but even with Stewart’s return in question for Saturday’s game against Texas that doesn’t mean Oklahoma State’s least unsuspecting receiver will relax and reflect on last week for too long.

“Me and (Stewart) take pride in our position as being playmakers,” Glidden said. “I try to push him everyday in practice and he knows that. I was confident in my ability to know the offense and that’s really what it came down to.”

And if Stewart is unable to go? Glidden said he’ll be ready.

“I like the pressure to go out there, put myself in that position, and be able to make plays,” Glidden said. “Hopefully, it can just keep up.”

Maybe if he does that, he might just surprise a few more people along the way.

“I think he’s got the ability to surprise a lot of people,” Yurcich said. “They may see him as a small guy that may not look like much on the field, but if he continues to make plays, we’ll find ways to get the ball to him. That goes for any of our guys. If they make plays, we’re going to find ways to get them the ball.”

Nick Snow is a sports reporter for the Stillwater NewsPress.

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