STILLWATER, Okla. (AP) -No. 9 Oklahoma State went back to work Monday amid the news that the investment by T. Boone Pickens that helped propel them into the top 10 had taken a sizable hit in recent months.
More importantly, they were trying to recover from their first loss of the season - a 28-24 defeat at top-ranked Texas on Saturday.
``It burns,'' defensive end Jamie Blatnick said. ``It burns a little bit, but now it's a new week. Sunday it burns, but Monday we've got to keep moving.''
The Cowboys (7-1, 3-1 Big 12) hung with the top-ranked Longhorns until the very end, their defeat only sealed when Zac Robinson's heave on the final play came up short of the end zone and got intercepted. The defense came up with two red zone stops in the fourth quarter to keep hope alive, and players seemed visibly shaken when it was finally over.
Mike Gundy said.
``When you play in a big showcase and there's a lot on the line and you don't win, you're supposed to feel that way.''
Though its no consolation, the surprising Cowboys showed even in defeat that they've earned their spot as one of the nation's top teams this season. That still didn't prevent them from falling in all three major polls, despite losing by only four after a road loss against the No. 1 team.
``You have to earn your respect in whatever you do, and at Oklahoma State we've done this so long,'' Gundy said, swooping his right hand up and down like a roller coaster, ``that I don't know that the people across the country have ever said, `OK, they're a legitimate good team.'
``There's only one way to change that, and it's to play well and be consistent and build your program and bring good players in and graduate players and win games on the road and play good year in and year out. When you do that, then people eventually say, `Hey, they're pretty good.' But you can't just go out and solicit that. It's not going to happen.''
h time.
``Remembering how that four-point loss felt while we're out there practicing, it's going to make everyone practice harder,'' Blatnick said. ``It's going to make everyone play harder because it hurt, so no one wants to go through that again. We're just lucky that we have more games to play.''
Linebacker Seb Clements said the Cowboys had a chance during their usual off day Sunday to get over the loss, just like they'd stop reveling in a win, and sticking with their usual routine would help eliminate any lingering emotions.
The only real difference in practice will be that the awards defensive coordinator Tim Beckman hands out to the defensive MVP and top performer at each position won't be given out this week.
``I bet you it is a little bit of motivation for them, but that's life. You've got to win. the winners are the ones that get rewarded,'' Beckman said. ``That's how I was raised and that's how I've been around programs, and that's the way it is.
``That's the way it is with our defense. We're going to learn from it and then we're going to get that (winning) feeling back.''

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