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Brad Underwood ‘Not Afraid’ To Play Five Freshmen

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Brad Underwood leaned heavily on hie freshmen last weekend against Tulsa as Cam McGriff, Lindy Waters, Brandon Averette, Lucas N’Guessan and Thomas Dziagwa totaled 112 of a possible 200 minutes. They weren’t throwaway minutes, either, as OSU beat a tough Tulsa team sans Jawun Evans and with about 60 percent of Phil Forte.

Underwood raved about his freshmen after the game and continued that theme this week as the head man previewed OSU’s game with Arkansas Pine Bluff.

“I don’t know if I necessarily want to make it a habit of having five freshmen out there at the same time, but I know I’m not afraid if I have to,” Underwood told the Tulsa World. “That group fought, they competed, they played together, they stayed together. Surprisingly, pretty good leadership out there from that group. They didn’t fold and they didn’t back down when Tulsa made the run. So a lot of veteran teams could have lost that game and that group of freshmen found a way to win.”

Oklahoma State’s “two-deep” over the last five games has included a freshman at every position — a staggering proposition as we head towards Big 12 play.

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Hopefully Underwood won’t have to lean on the first-years quite as much over the next few months, but if you have to do it, now is the time. Averette, Waters and McGriff (the three I suspect will play most come Big 12 time) will especially benefit from just getting minutes under their belts before the grind of the conference begins.

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