Skip to main content
You have permission to edit this article.

Yurcich clicks with offense

  • Updated
  • Comments

Oklahoma State is the preseason pick to win the Big 12 thanks in large part to ample returning talent on both sides of the ball.

But that doesn’t mean the team hasn’t experienced changes.

In fact, two new coordinators make for major differences entering the 2013 season.

While new defensive coordinator Glenn Spencer has been at OSU for six years and was co-coordinator with Bill Young in 2012, the man behind the Cowboy offense is brand new.

After former offensive coordinator Todd Monken took the head coach job at Southern Mississippi, Mike Yurcich was hired in February from Division II Shippensburg, where he led one of the most prolific offenses in the country.

Yurcich takes over an Oklahoma State group known for nothing more than offense. And although there was an adjustment period, it appears Yurcich and his players are 100 percent on the same page after fall camp.

“He’s a really good guy,” wide receiver Tracy Moore said. “He’s easy to talk to and get along with. From the first week, we never had any doubt he would be a good friend and a good coach.”

For the team, the transition was easier because rather than Yurcich bringing in an entirely new offensive system, he instead adjusted his own schemes to fit those already in place at OSU.

But inside receiver Josh Stewart said that, like any coordinator, Yurcich will put his own brand on the system.

“He loves to explore things and make options that can make things better for us as receivers, so it’s cool for us,” Stewart said at OSU Media Day on Aug. 3. “You can tell he knows the game.”

Still, most components of the Cowboy offense will be similar to last season under Monken, making the two coaches’ personalities the biggest difference.

Monken was known for his fiery coaching style. Players say Yurcich, on the other hand, is more laid back.

“He definitely likes order,” Moore said. “He’s like Monken in that he gets fired up, but he also has that more calm demeanor. If he can get the job done telling you man-to-man normally, then that’s how he’ll prefer to do it.”

So while Yurcich isn’t prone to exhaustive yelling, he’s stern in his own way.

“He’s not the coach who will just be on your butt all the time,” running back Jeremy Smith said. “He’s one of those guys who will say, ‘Do this, and if you don’t, then hey, we’ve got somebody else.’ ”

And for Smith, that’s just fine.

“That’s the way it should be,” Smith said. “A coach shouldn’t have to tell you a million times what to do. I love his coaching style and it’s going to be a great year for all of us.”