Hi I’m Burns Hargis, president of Oklahoma State University, and we’re here for another edition of inside OSU. And as you can see I’m surrounded by all kinds of football equipment, we’re here in the OSU Cowboys equipment room. And I mean it’s really something, I mean look at these guys right here, I had a jet ski smaller than this. This is amazing. And then you got the helmets. you got the clothes, here’s a helmet I played without a face-mask so this would of fit me. But today we’re gonna be talking about the equipment, which is not often talked about not often known much about but is a very important factor in a great team like the OSU Cowboys. We’re gonna find out what it takes to keep the Cowboys equipped at home and how they go on the road. Stay with us. Well here I am in front of another part of our equipment room with me is Wes Edwards who is our equipment coordinator. Wes welcome to Inside OSU. Thanks, thanks for being here. This equipment room strikes me as being like the rest of these facilities, state of the art. Is that right? Very much, we are very fortunate to have this place. What’s different about this equipment room and others where you’ve worked? Really the way we are able to store our stuff and our mobile storage units, and we’ve got room for everything we’d need. We have 130 athletes and coaches and staff and we are able to take care of everybody without not having enough room. What’s involved in getting the team ready for an away game? Well I’ll probably miss some stuff because there is that much involved. Where do you start? We’ll start Sunday or even Saturday night when we get home. It’s washing the uniforms getting them ready for the next game. And then it’s getting with the coaches, whose dressing this week, whose not. Then getting our staff organized and getting their game shoes ready, everybody has game shoes, game gloves, jerseys, pants. I’ve got twelve students and then Matt and Justin that also help us in here, it takes all of us to get this thing going and be ready for Saturday. The uniform combinations is a big subject of discussion every week. Even at my house. You keep it under wraps I don’t know until the very last minute. Who decides that? Coach will pick a committee of usually four players, we’ll put our ideas down and meet with the committee and ask them is there something you want to wear that you don’t see here or something you don’t want to wear. and we’ll sit with those guys about 30 to 45 minutes and go over the whole season in August so every week we aren’t worried about it trying to figure it out. When do they find out? They find out when they come to the locker room on game-day, whether it’s at home after the walk or when they get off the bus on the road, that’s when they find out. What’s the most popular? With the players anything black, with our alumni anything orange. Looking at all this you must have a ton of washing machines. Absolutely. Let’s go have a look, let’s go to the laundry. Well here I am in the laundry room as promised and with me is Joey Benningfield from Medford, Oklahoma. Yes sir. Is that right? Yes sir. How long have you been a student equipment manager? I’ve been a student equipment manager for I’m going on my fifth year now. Obviously, I guess your drying over and then wash there. How often do you wash a week? Oh about your average day wee do about twenty loads of laundry, give or take. Everyday? everyday, gotta wash weight room stuff, practice sloughs, coaches and staff sloughs, all the towels everything so there is quite a bit of laundry being done on an average day here. Well getting ready for a game must be quite a process. Oh yeah there’s a lot of stuff that goes into the team ready for every Saturday.
Either home or away. Why don’t you show us what you have put together. Every player have to have a pair or shoulder pads in their bag, we also have to make sure they have all their hip, tail, thigh, and knee pads. O-line will have their knee shackles. Their cleats, some guys have ankle braces, some guys don’t. How do you keep track of everything they need? Do you keep that in a computer? We have many a spreadsheets, we have many lists we check things off with and everything we give a player is labeled with their locker number of game number. That keeps us pretty well in check. Well getting all this ready and then getting it loaded up on the truck must be very interesting. When do you normally load up? We load up on Thursday, all day Thursday and Thursday after practice is when we do most loading. Well let’s go have a look at that. Alright let’s go. Wes, so this is what you load for away games, and when do you start? Well we start loading usually Thursday morning. Matt and Justin and myself will start rolling trunks that are ready to go.
Player bags, like you saw with Joey, those will go on after they practice. So really all day Thursday we’re loading this thing. When do you actually leave Stillwater? Usually Thursday night between 8 and 10 o’clock, depending on how long practice went and how long it takes everyone to get their final stuff ready. So you’ll drive well into the night? Yes absolutely, they’ll roll out and we leave thursday night that way if blow a tire or anything like that happens, which we hope doesn’t, you’ve got plenty of time to get that repaired and back on the road before the team gets wherever we are going. And then after the game, with television there’s all these night games going on so I mean you don’t get finished until pretty late, when do you get all loaded up and head home? Well about two hours after the game we’re loaded, all the dirty laundry is collected, we’re loaded, trucks loaded, we’re ready to go. We’ll start driving home that night, all the student managers, student trainers are on a big orange bus and they come back with the truck. And then we come home and unload and start getting ready for the next week. It is evident that this is a very complicated process, very difficult and Wes you do a great job, I know you have a great staff we appreciate everything you do. We probably really should let you get back to packing for the K-State game. Getting ready for the wildcats. Well thanks a lot Wes, we appreciate the tour, this is very interesting. Well that’s another edition of Inside OSU from here in the equipment section of the West endzone of Boone Pickens Stadium. We’ll see you next time.