Are You Ready for the “Kam-Akwasi” Cowboy?

We find ourselves meandering through the practice notes and news each day as we lead up to the Hall of Fame game today between the Dallas Cowboys and the Cincinnati Bengals. Lots of questions from the past season are on every fans mind as we get to have a look see at some of the young players the Cowboys are prepping to make the final roster to head into our 50th season and hopefully our 6th Lombardi Trophy and NFL Championship. Since I already focused on the main position that most people are focusing on this year, left tackle, I thought I would delve into the other main question that has been dogging us since Woody left with us a big hole in the secondary when he walked off into his final sunset as a player.

Free Safety is the one main position that we over look every year. Mainly because we have a couple of guys who tend to just kind of get by and barely get the job done. We were spoiled for a long time because we had Darren Woodson back there to hold down the fort and once he left we got to see just how special he really was. This year though going into the off season Jerry decided he has had enough and gave Ken Hamlin his walking papers and went out and drafted someone that everyone thought we were looking at as a cornerback but some scouts believe that he could turn into a very good free safety. I bring you Akwasi Owusu-Ansah from a small little division II school out of western Pennsylvania.  He has a lot of the same attributes that Domonique Rodgers-Cromartie had when he came out of a Division II school, DRC has a bit more speed then him but Akwasi may be a more versatile player and be able to impact the game in a couple other ways then playing in the secondary.

Akwasi was a running back n high school and was switched to cornerback when he got to college. You can see this high school background when he is returning the ball, whether it is on an interception return, a kickoff or punt return. He has those knees just pumping away and doesn’t stop those legs churning until he is brought down.  Usually not on the first attempt at tackling him either. I have watched a couple of the highlight reels of him returning kicks and seen a couple where it took five to six attempts to finally knock him on his keester..    and some he didn’t find his knee on the ground until he was striking paydirt. With his 6 foot, 200 lb frame he is that tweener between a corner and safety when it comes to size but his 4.4 range 40 yd dash time will make you forget about that quickly especially because that speed translates on the field as well.

Now I know everyone will be questioning his ability to transition from division II to the NFL in the secondary but, that is not a worry because of his talents in the return game. Returning a football on kicks in college no matter the level the same talents are needed in the NFL. Awareness and the ability to turn on a dime and also make people miss. That is something he excelled at in college. He will have time to work on his secondary skills while returning punts and he has already gotten some praise form Brett Maxie because of his ability to learn the defensive sets while recovering from shoulder surgery in the off season. He will obviously have to learn run support to play safety as he was a cornerback in college but he has long arms and great closing speed to stop plays dead, whether its wrapping the ball carrier to tackle him or using those arms to deflect balls. His closing speed though allows him to jump routes on receivers.

All in all I think that his ability to help create turnovers, which the Cowboys need a huge shot in the arm in and also his return ability coudl help us have one of the best return games in the NFL. How would you luck to be the coach or kicker trying to decide which person to kickoff to…  Akwasi or Felix. Talk about trying to pick the lesser of two evils!

50 Years of Cowboys Football Begins Saturday

We are coming up on the day we as Cowboy fans having been waiting for since Emmitt Smith retired in 2005. Saturday the great Emmitt Smith will join the other two Triplets when he is inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. It’s been a long time coming and it will be a very emotional day for all of us.

The current Cowboys team will be there supporting Emmitt and playing the Hall of a Fame game on Sunday. Interestingly enough, they will be facing the Cincinnati Bengals who now house a number of former Cowboys including Roy Williams and Terrell Owens.

Needless to say, this is our last week without football. This weekend the Dallas Cowboys kickoff the football season with a bang starting with Emmitt Smith and the Hall of Fame.

I couldn’t think of a better way to get the 50th year of Cowboys Football started.

Make sure you tune into the Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on Saturday on ESPN coverage begins at 6:00 p.m. Central time. Followed by the Hall of Fame game Sunday evening on NBC, kickoff at 7 p.m. Central time.

FOOTBALL IS BACK! How Bout Them Cowboys!

You can find this mural and so much more at

Dez Bryant says no to Roy Williams

With training camp finally under way I was happy to finally get some news from the Cowboys this past weekend. All the practicing and the competition at so many positions is under way. I also loved the Kickoff show Friday night. For those who have not seen it you can watch it here.

The one thing that stood out to me this weekend was Dez Bryant refusing to carry Roy Williams shoulder pads after Sunday mornings practice. Bryant does not believe in any rookie initiations.

“I’m not doing it,” Bryant said. “I feel like I was drafted to play football, not carry another player’s pads.”

“If I was a free agent, it would still be the same thing. I just feel like I’m here to play football. I’m here to try to help win a championship, not carry someone’s pads. I’m saying that out of no disrespect to [anyone].”

“I don’t believe in that at all,” Bryant said. “We have a goal here. It’s not about playing games. It’s all about just trying to do the right thing and achieve our goal.”

Roy Williams does believe rookies should be doing some things for the veterans just like he had to do as a rookie.

“Everybody has to go through it,” Williams said. “I had to go through it. No matter if you’re a No. 1 pick or the 7,000th pick, you’ve still got to do something when you’re a rookie.

“I carried pads. I paid for dinners. I paid for lunches. I did everything I was supposed to do, because I didn’t want to be that guy.”

I love that Dez Bryant refuses to carry Williams shoulder pads and is saying all the right things about the team being first and working towards a goal. With that kind of thinking from Bryant it won’t be long before Williams is carrying Bryant’s shoulder pads. Maybe Williams should concentrate more on catching the football then bothering the player that is most likely going to replace him.

Other news from camp is that supplemental pick Josh Brent suffered a broken hand in practice Sunday morning. Coach Wade Philips is hoping Brent can return to practice Monday. Any kind of time missed will only hurt Brent for his chances of making the team.

Keith Brooking is only practicing once a day as he recovers from off-season knee surgery. Although Brooking says he feels good, he understands that at his age it will do his body good to be held out a little during training camp.

Who is this man? Nate “The Kitchen” Newton has taken care of himself due to some serious health issues as he approached almost 400 pounds. On April 19th Newton had weight loss surgery and has since lost 132 pounds. He is now down to 263 pounds and is feeling good.

Orlando Scandrick is working through the pain of his broken finger and knows that training camp is even more important because of the work he missed during the teams OTAs.

“I’ve still got some pain but I’m working through it,” Scandrick said. “Just have to be tough. I just need time. I need the practice. I could feel my timing was off. I felt a little rusty out there.”

Getting the Party Started In San Antonio

Training camp signifies the beginning of football season, and the Cowboys always know how to get the party started right!

I’d like to thank my good friend Becky for sharing these pictures via text as she enjoyed memorable moments down in San Antonio. Training Camp is open to the public with free admission so if you are in the area or have the chance to make a road trip down south, as you can tell from these pictures I have no doubt you will have a wonderful time.

San Antonio, Texas Training Camp: July 23rd through August 6th

Oxnard, California Training Camp: August 14th through August 27th

Rowdy on stage at the Kickoff Spectacular

Felix Jones taking some time to sign autographs for fans

Roy Williams signing autographs for fans in the stands

Dez Bryant getting attacked by the media at training camp

Mike Jenkins and others on the sideline at practice

Marion Barber and teammates at practice

Tashard Choice stretching in the endzone

Dez Is How We Do It In Big D

Many may be worried about his integrity.  Many may be worried about his stamina, having played very little ball in his final college season at Oklahoma State.  But today, Dez Bryant proved his drive by being the first player to take the field for the kickoff of training-camp.

According to the Associated Press, Bryant was on the field 45 minutes early wearing his coveted number 88 jersey. 

He began catching passes soon-after from undrafted rookie QB Matt Nichols.

“I want to help this team. I want to compete. I can’t wait to start playing football again,” Bryant said in a statement that was released by the Cowboys earlier in the week.

Bryant’s willingness to get his deal done and hit the field so readily, stand to backup these statements.

Only time will tell if those double-eights on his shoulders will become too much weight to bear.

Training Camp Kickoff Extravaganza

I can just hear all of the fans loading up their cars and heading to San Antonio as I write this – Road Trip! For those of you lucky enough to go to Training Camp you already know tonight is the big night, the Cowboys will kickoff in style.

Here is the information posted on the Cowboys official website:

2010 Training Camp Kickoff Spectacular

Friday, July 23rd
At the Alamodome
Free to the public
Doors open at 6pm
Event starts at 7pm

Duelo and Bowling for Soup

Also Appearing:
The Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders
The Dallas Cowboys Players and Coaches

We are one step closer to football season and we are looking forward to a spectacular year!

If you have made plans to go sneak a peak at the 2010 Cowboys as they prepare for the season and want to share your experience with thousands of Cowboys fans, just send an e-mail to lonestarstruck at aol dot com, or click here to submit a message through our contact form.

Diary of a Mad Cowboys Fan

I come from a huge family of Dallas natives who are all Cowboys fanatics, but I’d put money on it that if you asked any one of them who the biggest fan in the Horn family is, the majority of them would without hesitation say, “That would be Kelly Nell!” Ask anyone at my place of business and they wouldn’t think for a moment before saying, “Miss Kelly, of course!”

I’ve got Cowboys posters and memorabilia in my bedroom, a closet full of jerseys plus enough Dallas tees to wear a different one every day for weeks, and even a “Cowboys” silver car… not to mention my favorite addiction, this Cowboys website.

In my household, football season means Sundays are booked – no parties, no outings, no shopping, no work. Dinner is planned around the game. From kickoff until the clock reads 0:00, no one better get in front of the tv and I’m not answering questions, taking random phone calls, no cleaning, cooking, laundry… well I’m sure you get the point.

My teenage son, as amazing as he is, says “Go Cowboys” but I’m not sure he means it the way I do. I’ve bought him jerseys, jackets, etc. – but he’s just not that into football. I’ve been known to scream at the television and get a little bit vocal during Cowboys games. I’m pretty sure that’s why he hides in his bedroom at kickoff. But hey, I love him just the same.

Over the last couple of years I’ve gotten to know some amazing people who also love the Cowboys. I know people who hold season tickets year after year and people who travel clear across the country just to witness a Cowboys game. Although some of the biggest and craziest Cowboys fans I know have never even been to a game, but love ’em just the same.

I have friends whose homes are completely decorated in Blue and Silver, from the shower curtain to the sofa. I have friends who blog about the ‘Boys, and many who “vlog”, some designs graphics, and others spend hours on forums. Some of my Rowdy friends drive vehicles with players painted on them, decorated with star logos, and personalized Cowboys-themed license plates.

I have Cowboy-tattooed friends, and even some who name their children after players and coaches (I think Landry would be a cool boy’s name).

I think each of us has our own way to express our true blue enthusiasm. I’d rather not classify who is more of a fan, or less of a fan. I’m just happy to say I have been lucky enough to get to know some kickass people who I can relate to because of the Dallas Cowboys.

I feel honored to be able to share my love for this team with all of you through Lone Star Struck. I am so proud of the name we have built in the Cowboys online community and our amazing fan base that continues to grow daily.

From the average football fan to the obsessed die hard fanatic, you are important to the Cowboys organization, and the NFL for that matter.

Lil' Baby WittenRegardless of what kind of a fan you are, without all of us, and I mean every single one of us, there would be no team. Its the oldest principle in the book – supply and demand. We the fans demand some Cowboys football.

It may be offseason but being a Cowboys fan isn’t seasonal,  its a year round event. We are counting down the days until the draft, and looking forward to training camp. Some of us are already planning tailgate parties and road trips to visit Arlington or the closest football stadium that will be lucky enough to host the Dallas Cowboys.

Some rivals and opposing fans question why the Cowboys are America’s Team? Well the answer is crystal clear, WE are the reason.

My fellow fans span from California to New York and Illinois to Florida, not to mention the great state of Texas and its neighboring states (a big hello to my fellow Oklahomans). From sea to shining sea, we are loud and we are proud, we are Cowboys fans and I have to say it’s been a pleasure meeting all of you.

Note: We will be adding a fan gallery to the site this offseason and would love all of you to contribute your photos. Keep us in mind, and stay tuned for information on how to submit your Cowboys pictures.

Cowboys Stadium: A Fan’s Eye View

I have had the absolute luxury of attending four home games this year, in our inaugural season in the new, breathtaking stadium. I also attended the Big 12 Championship game between Texas and Nebraska, but that being said let me start from the beginning.

The first game I went to was Monday Night Football against the Panthers. I was so dang excited and in awe of the stadium that I am thankful I went in several hours early to take it all in.The fans were pretty lively as the minutes ticked away to the kickoff, as a matter of fact I specifically remember getting the chills when they played the intro to MNF on the big screen and when we all heard the anthem to MNF everyone was going crazy …and then we watched a half that ended with Carolina up 3-0. That does sort of take the wind out of your sails.

I sat in the upper level for this game and there were several groups trying to start chants and even the dreaded wave, and it was a decent atmosphere. There were a lot of cheers during the defensive series.

The second game I attended was a 3 o’clock kickoff vs Atlanta. I was very lucky to get free lower level tickets on the 15th row. This is where I saw a marked difference. There was little to zero passion down there. As a matter of fact, there were at least 10 empty seats on our row! The face value of these tickets were $375.00 each, so I seriously doubt that someone would pay that and just decide not to go, so they must have belonged to some gigantoid corporation.

I remember early on in that game texting my friend who was in the 200 level and telling him that there was no hype, no excitement. This was during one of our best wins of the season. Sam Hurd was dancing and waving his arms before every kickoff to get the fans into it, and this would work to an extent. I almost felt bad once, because I stood up on a 3rd down to cheer and looked around and I was the only one.

So, on that occasion it was NOT a great atmosphere. I loved the view, but not the vibe.

My third game was Thanksgiving and again, I was in the upper level. This game was sort of a tweener, sometimes really good, sometimes very quiet. Miles Austin brought the biggest cheer of the day when he was doing a little celebrating on the bench and it was shown on the big screen. He was smiling and holding his arms up and the place went nuts.

Overall, this being a holiday game and a very lackluster opponent, I was a little disappointed in the atmosphere.

Now, about last week’s game against the Chargers. I was shocked to see so many San Diego fans! This must have just not translated to the TV because this was a loud game. The fans knew how important this game was, and if not, then the loud, obnoxious Chargers fans put a little life into them. The 4th and goal debacle and lack of points took some steam of off things, but I really enjoyed Sunday’s game from an atmosphere standpoint.

I have some theories to why things seem to be the way you wrote… but first, let me just say that the most insane, intense game was without question the Big 12 Championship.

With the crowd split about 65/35, there was never a quiet moment, the marching bands in the stands filled every break with fight songs and such, and the colors were vibrant… it seems that every person in the building was wearing red or burnt orange. It was an amazing experience.

Now, my theories on why the stadium is or can be quiet.

First theory: the product on the field. Let’s be real and honest with ourselves as die-hard fans. We are disappointed right now, we have no consistency, we can’t seem to make the defensive stops we need so badly, cheering or not! The offense racks up yards but can’t put points on the board and we are very unsure about our head coach. Just because we don’t boo doesn’t mean we are not concerned.

If we as knowledgeable fans feel this way, imagine the schmucks and trophy wives that sit down along the first level, they don’t know anything but when the Cowboys score it’s good and when they don’t it’s bad. While this may be a reflection on ticket prices, I believe it’s more of a reflection on casual fans.

Secondly, the aforementioned ticket prices. When you out-price the average joe, then you lose your most passionate fans. If there is one thing I walk aways from thinking after each game, is that this is NO Texas Stadium, in both good and bad ways; I remember being at many games there and while you would freeze your you-know-what off trying to walk to a 30-year old bathroom. You had an awesome time screaming and yelling and cheering.

I recall a Sunday night game four years ago, the first home game against the Redskins and it was electric. When Romo hit Terry Glenn in the endzone for a TD, my friends and I went crazy, jumping and chest bumping and so was everyone else. You just don’t see that now at the new place. There is no community of fans, no tradition yet.

And my last theory: the big TV. It is amazing, the most awe inspiring thing you could imagine but it draws people in like a tractor beam. You just sit there and stare at it. I have weened myself off of it to an extent this year and now am able to actually watch the live game below, but look around and everyone is sitting back, eating their popcorn watching the game on TV. It almost brainwashes people into forgetting they are AT A GAME!

Who knows, maybe these could all have a little truth to them, or maybe none at all. I am with you and with Roy, and I try to do my little part. I know that winning and consistency cure all. The fans, for the most part, start off with good intentions. It’s those 7-6 games against the Redskins that seem to turn even the best intentions, into disappointing actions.

I want to give it time, let the stadium grow it’s own traditions. Let’s get some landmark victories in there and let’s let the corporate suits give their tickets away to clients for now, and as time goes by we can hope that the stadium becomes more accessible to the true fans! Go COWBOYS!

This comment was promoted to a post in response to: Are You Starstruck? Then Act Like It!

And So Another December Starts… Badly!!

So the Cowboys stood at 8-3. A two game lead over the NY Giants with an opportunity to send the Giants to a 6-6 record and pretty much end their season. We all know the December history with this team over the last three seasons and we have all heard the talk this past week. The Cowboys then open a 10-0 lead on the Giants late in the second quarter and well…that’s where it kind of ended.

The Cowboys took a 10-0 lead on the Giants with a nice Romo to Williams touchdown pass. They had the Giants just were they wanted them. The once mighty 5-0 Giants now at 6-5 and little or no confidence in the way they were playing. So what does the Dallas defense do when they have the Giants down? Well, you would think they would step on their throats and end it for them. But no, they allow the Giants to drive down the field and score to tighten the game to 10-7 and give the Giants some life.

Next possession for the Cowboys with a little over a minute left in the first half. The Cowboys try to answer the Giants touchdown, but then Marion Barber fumbles. The Giants take full advantage of the turnover and score the go ahead touchdown right before halftime. Dallas had the Giants on their knees begging for mercy, but just like in past seasons the Cowboys let a team off the hook and gave them life.

Third quarter…Romo leads the offense to the go ahead score on another touchdown to Williams, 17-14. You think the Dallas defense would try to respond once again. But….it took the Giants only one play to take the lead back. A short pass to Jacobs resulted in a 74 yard go ahead for good touchdown. Here is my question. How does the defense let something like this happen? I honestly thought the Dallas defense was still on the sideline after the kickoff. But then I saw Anthony Spencer, Bradie James and Gerald Sensabaugh. But Spencer might have well been on the sideline as Jacobs ran away from him like he was standing still.

Onto the fourth quarter as the Cowboys held the Giants to an all important field goal to keep the Giants lead to only seven points, 24-17. Although I must say that it really had nothing to do with the Dallas defense on the third down play as Steve Smith clearly beat Scandrick (That’s a surprise!!!), but dropped the pass.

Ok, you would think the Cowboys are in good shape as they are only down by seven points with a lot of time left in the game. So they get the ball back and what happens? Yes, three and out as Barber gains three yards on first down, Romo get an intentional grounding penalty which results in a lost down. And on third and 17 they can only manage a short gain to Witten.

Punt formation!!!! Ok, punt the ball and let’s get the ball back with plenty of time left. Nope!!!! Not going to happen. Hixon gets the ball and after three missed tackles (well, I kind of stopped counting at that point and proceeded to destroy my living room), Hixon scores on a 79 punt return to put the Giants up 31-17.

Once again the Cowboys get the ball back and start driving. They get to the Giants 36 yard line where Williams is beyond wide open down the right sideline and what does Romo do? He misses him on what would have been a touchdown. And two plays later they fail on a fourth down attempt.

Yes, Romo once again drove the Cowboys down the field for a score at the end of game that was already over, but it was just too late at that point. The Cowboys once again just gave up too many big plays and were not able to respond when they needed too. So, December of 2009 is underway and the Cowboys are now 0-1. They have fallen to 8-4 and are tied with the Eagles for first place with the Giants now only one game back.

What is ahead for the Cowboys. Oh, not much. Just four teams playing at the top of their game. Yes, even the Redskins who lost today, but still played one hell of a game against the Saints. Here is the rest of the schedule for the Cowboys….

San Diego, 8-3

at New Orleans, 12-0

at Washington, 3-9 (record will not matter)

Philadelphia, 8-4

At this point I honestly do not know what will happen the rest of the season. The way I am feeling right now (frustrated), I can take a guess, but I would rather not because it just makes me sick to my stomach. I would say I’m speechless, but I just read my own post and I guess I’m anything but speechless.

Barber Decision: All or Nothing

Despite the recent build-up that Marion Barber may sit out this week after injuring his quad, the team still has not made a decision if he will play or not. However, Wade Phillips announced if Barber is active he will take his full workload. The decision will come 90 minutes before kickoff tomorrow. He is listed officially as questionable.

“His game is power,” Phillips said. “If he’s not as powerful, that could be a factor. It’s so subjective.”

The Cowboys starting running back pulled up lame while speeding toward the goal line in last week’s loss to the Giants. Barber returned to practice Wednesday and told reporters,

“If I’m good today, I’m going to be good tomorrow and then I’m going to be good up until Monday.”

The Cowboys would not want Barber to injure himself further, therefore they are prepared to give the load to Tashard Choice and Felix Jones if they decide to rest MB3.

Week 1 Preview: Cowboys at Buccaneers

The time has come my fellow football fanatics! Football season is officially here and the Cowboys first game of the year begins in less than an hour.

The anticipation has built up to the max and all we can do now is watch and cheer! I’ve been watching ESPN this morning, NFL Countdown. Don’t worry they still hate us. Funny how some things never change.

As for our team, everyone looks ready to go. Sam Hurd and Miles Austin are both ready to play and needed on special teams especially. That means that rookie Kevin Ogletree has been declared inactive for today’s game, after an amazing preseason I find that very odd.

The inactive list is as follows:

WR Kevin Ogletree
S Mike Hamlin
LB Jason Williams
G Montrae Holland
C Duke Preston
T Pat McQuistan
3rd QB Stephen McGee
OLB Curtis Johnson

There is a chance for rain today in Tampa Bay but the temperature will remain in the mid-80s. Unless thunderstorms strike heavy it should be decent weather.

We will be hosting a Live Game Chat starting at kickoff throughout the entire game. We invite you to join fellow Cowboys fanatics, LSS Staff and friends to discuss the game, cheer the Boys, and anything else that comes up over the course of 4 quarters.

My prediction: Cowboys 34 – Bucs 17

Three Down, One To Go

With preseason coming to an end this weekend, I found myself asking what have we learned from these exhibition games? After all isn’t that what preseason is all about? Of course, Cowboys fans what a win every game no matter what, but when it comes to preseason its more about seeing how the backups handle their roles, and learning who should stay and who should go.

Most would agree, the starters have looked amazing. Training camp served its purpose and served it well this year. Tony Romo looks rock solid. The power of Marion Barber and Felix Jones looks unstoppable. The defense looks tough (with a few minor adjustments).

Kevin OgletreePROS

Kevin Ogletree– who knew this undrafted rookie would prove to have so much talent. I agree with the fact it is only preseason but I certainly see Ogletree making the team before Stanback.

David Buehler – many questioned drafting a kicker, more questioned him making the team, but this special teams ‘specialist’ not only has an accurate kickoff but can tackle as well.

Keith Brooking – his experience and leadership reminds me of Zach Thomas last season. Its always nice to have a veteran role model on the squad.


Corey Procter – his performance has been underwhelming and rumors persist that he will be cut.

Courtney Brown – after getting an earful from Coach Phillips in front of the cameras, Brown’s most recent pass interference penalty was possibly the straw that broke the camel’s back.

Isaiah Stanback – he has been given a few too many chances to prove he can be a reliable receiver. Keeping him on the roster any longer is just absurd, when he’s actually healthy enough to play he hasn’t shown he has what it takes to make the team.

Bobby Carpenter – another first round draft pick letdown. He most likely won’t be cut because of injuries to rookies and the lack of depth at LB. However, that doesn’t mean I have to like him.

Penalties– they have got to get better disciplined. After 3 match-ups the Cowboys have racked up 32 penalties for 300 yards.

Special Teams– too many of the penalties just listed came from special teams. Field position means too much to continuously give up yardage for holding and other pathetic penalties.


Jon Kitna– hopefully it won’t matter how Kitna played in preseason because we won’t see him take the field. Some are saying he’s not the guy, but he is only a backup after all. His age is definitely catching up with him, but in time of need he may still be able to get the job done.

Wade Phillips

I’m sure there are a few I missed. Who would you add to pros or cons? Is there anyone you are still undecided about? The Cowboys have to cut three players for tomorrow’s deadline, who will it be?