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Oklahoma State football: Which Cowboys in 2021 class are ready to play right away, redshirt?

Midwest City's Makale Smith, an OSU signee, catches a touchdown pass against Tulsa Booker T. Washington on Nov. 20, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman]
Midwest City's Makale Smith, an OSU signee, catches a touchdown pass against Tulsa Booker T. Washington on Nov. 20, 2020. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman]

STILLWATER — Oklahoma State returns starters and experienced players at virtually every position across the board heading into 2021.

Still, a few new faces might have the opportunity to play right away.

OSU has added 23 players, consisting of three Division I transfers, three junior-college transfers and 17 high school signees.

Here’s a look at three newcomers who could potentially contribute in the fall, and three who are likely to redshirt:

Most likely to contribute

Caleb Etienne: The 6-foot-9, 320-pound offensive tackle from Butler Community College in Kansas will have an open run at a starting tackle job following the graduation of Teven Jenkins. Players like Jake Springfield and Hunter Anthony gained experience at the tackle spots last season, but neither has the size of Etienne. The only question is whether he can make the jump from junior college to Division I seamlessly in a short amount of time.

Nick Martin: The 6-foot, 200-pound linebacker isn't going to steal a starting job from Malcolm Rodriguez, but some backup time or special teams work could be in line for Martin, from Pleasant Grove High School in Texarkana, Texas. His physicality and speed will translate quickly to the next level and help him get on the field in some capacity.

Austin Jarrard: With Jelani Woods transferring to Virginia, the opportunity for immediate playing time at tight end came available. Logan Carter is returning for a sixth year, but Jarrard, a 6-foot-3, 245-pound transfer from American River Community College in California, should be in the mix right away — particularly if the Cowboys use as many multiple-tight end sets as they did in 2020.

Most likely to redshirt

De’kelvion Beamon: It is likely that all the high school defensive backs OSU signed will be able to redshirt, because of the Cowboys’ depth in the secondary. Beamon, however, reclassified to graduate from high school a year early and could use the year to physically develop.

Logan Nobles: The Cowboys are excited about what the Jenks native brings to the table, but like most offensive linemen coming out of high school, he will need some time to adjust to the physicality of Big 12 football and add some weight to his 6-foot-7, 275-pound frame.

Makale Smith: Smith is another defensive back likely to redshirt in the fall. A gifted athlete who only returned to the sport of football before his junior year at Midwest City, Smith could use some time to polish his game under the Cowboy coaching staff.

Scott Wright

A lifelong resident of the Oklahoma City metro area, Scott Wright has been on The Oklahoman staff since 2005, covering a little bit of everything on the state's sports scene. He has been a beat writer for football and basketball at Oklahoma and... Read more ›