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OKLAHOMA STATE FOOTBALL

OSU defensive end Brock Martin setting the tone as a sixth-year senior

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The Oklahoma State player contingency emerged in stylish fashion at Big 12 Media Days last week in cowboy boots and jeans — the idea of defensive end Brock Martin, who also wore a cowboy hat.

“That’s all him,” teammate Brennan Presley said. “He’s a cowboy like that.”

As a sixth-year senior from Oologah who is the most veteran player on the team, Martin has been known to set the tone on the field and in the locker room.

“He’s the old man of the group and just gets everybody on track,” fellow defensive end Tyler Lacy said. “Even if we’re goofing off, he’s the one that brings us back on track and tells us the reason why we’re here.”

Martin has played in a team-high 50 games with 22 starts and is coming off his most productive season, totaling 41 tackles and nine sacks. But what played a role in his return for the extra COVID year was coming up short in the Big 12 championship game against Baylor.

“I just don’t think I wanted it to be over,” he said. “It was just kind of one of those moments where I couldn’t believe it just happened. You wanted the moments to last a little longer and wanted another chance at it type of deal.”

Aside from the team aspect, Martin could have benefited from the additional exposure if OSU won that game.

“Chances are if we would have won that game we make the playoffs, then you get more attention, more scouting, GMs come and look at you and stuff like that,” he said. “You never know what my draft grade would have been. I’ll never know, because it didn’t happen.”

A four-time selection to the Academic All-Big 12 first team, Martin has delivered game-changing plays throughout his career including a fumble recovery in last year’s Bedlam win, a fumble return for a touchdown against TCU in 2020 and a fumble recovery against West Virginia in 2018.

Asked about his goals for his final season, Martin said: “I just want to improve on some of the stuff that I had last year. I had nine sacks last year. I’d like to increase that amount, increase my tackles for losses and pressure rate. And obviously help this team out as much as I can and win this Big 12 championship and get a chance at the playoffs.”

OSU’s defensive line is the most experienced and deepest position group within the team, highlighted by Martin, Lacy, Collin Oliver and Brendon Evers — players who have 80 starts combined.

“We have guys that have done this for a very long time, have a lot of games started, a lot of games played in,” Martin said. “We’ve all been comfortable with it and we all bring out different skills sets to the field at the same time and it all just fits together well. Last year we ended up being the No. 1-rated sack team in the country.”

Presley said Martin is a valued teammate because he doesn’t sugarcoat anything but is still fun to be around. He is among nine super-seniors on the roster, players who bring vast experience for a season in which the Cowboys will look to return to the Big 12 title game.

“He loves and he cares,” Presley said. “I think he came back just to have one more shot to run it back with the brothers that he loves on the D-line and the rest of the team. I think that speaks more about his personality and how badly he wants to get back here.”

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Sports Writer

I have covered college football and college basketball for the Tulsa World since 2012. I spend my spare time as an animal rescue volunteer, focusing on spaying and neutering community cats in the Tulsa area. Phone: 918-581-8452

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