Bovada, an online gambling destination, offers odds on just about everything sports-related. Monday, it listed the odds for candidates to become Florida’s next head coach. The favorite?
Oklahoma State’s Mike Gundy at 4-1.
“That’s crazy,” Gundy said at his news conference on Monday.
So is this season, by recent Cowboys’ standards.
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Oklahoma State, 5-5 and riding a four-game losing streak, needs a victory in one of its final two games at Baylor and Oklahoma to keep alive a bowl streak that stands at eight years.
Gundy’s first team missed a bowl game. He hasn’t missed one since.
But last week’s 28-7 home loss to Texas has made things difficult, and a microscope isn’t required to find the biggest problem.
“Last week’s game was simple,” Gundy said. “We got beat up front on both sides of the ball. It’s hard to win a game when you don’t win in the trenches.”
That’s happened too often lately, and the issue was complicated when dual-threat quarterback J.W. Walsh went down early in the season and the Cowboys turned to Daxx Garman. Walsh was mobile but Garman is less so, and that has amplified the Pokes’ inexperienced offensive line.
Oklahoma State entered the season as one of the nation’s most inexperienced teams, but an opportunistic early schedule masked some of the problems. After a competitive loss to Florida State in the opener, the Cowboys won their next five, including Big 12 victories over Texas Tech, Iowa State and Kansas.
When the going got tough with the schedule, Oklahoma State couldn’t get going.
“We are improving, we’re just playing better teams,” Gundy said.
So, if Florida came calling …
Gundy wasn’t biting, but there he may have felt bitten by a recent comment by Oklahoma State’s biggest and richest fan, T. Boone Pickens, for whom the stadium is named.
Asked last week by the Austin American Statesman if he supported Gundy as the coach, Pickens didn’t exactly offer a strong endorsement.
“My response to that is I’m certainly supportive of Oklahoma State University,” Pickens said. “I'm always going to be for OSU, I don't care who coaches ’em.”
Gundy returned the volley on Monday.
“That’s awesome,” he said. “I happen to be the football coach, that means he’s supporting me. … I don’t need anybody telling me they like me or don’t like me. I don’t really care. I just like to coach my guys and keep playing ball.”
Oklahoma State under Mike Gundy
won Heart of Dallas