STILLWATER — Inside the locker room, Oklahoma State linebacker Shaun Lewis is the voice of the Cowboys defense — loud, assertive and passionate.
But when it comes to personal accomplishments? Not so much.
“I don’t really pay attention to it,” Lewis said. “I could have a poor season and everybody else would write you off.”
It seems like most people already have. As members of the media flocked to guys like Calvin Barnett, Jeremy Smith and Tracy Moore, Lewis, a preseason all-Big 12 selection, sat idly and watched.
And that’s fine by him.
“Shaun’s worried about today’s practice more than anything,” Oklahoma State defensive coordinator Glenn Spencer said. “He probably studies tape more than anybody on defense.”
Even for an all-Big 12 selection he may not be getting the attention he deserves yet, but it’s hard to imagine a Cowboy defense without No. 11 on the field. Lewis has been a starter since he was a freshman and has been a key to Oklahoma State’s defensive success.
“I’ve seen Shaun since his freshman year,” Spencer said. “He was very mature then. He’s been steady. He’s been a rock for us — emotionally, ability-wise and spiritually. He’s a quality young man and he’s a playmaker.”
But it’s how he goes about making plays that amazes coaches. He’ll often spend 12 hours a week just studying film, trying to find ways to get better all while becoming a student of the game.
“I’ve always studied the game as hard as I could, so I’ve always been prepared for what’s to come,” Lewis said. “You watch film to put yourself in certain situations to see how you’ll react or to be able to better expect what’s coming. It helps you out because you’re able to play faster when you watch film.”