Gundy staying at Oklahoma State
BY JIMMIE TRAMEL World Sports Writer
Thursday, December 06, 2012
12/06/12 at 3:27 AM
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Arkansas and Tennessee flirted with Mike Gundy. His marriage to Oklahoma State survived.
Three days of suspense about Gundy's future ended when it was quasi-announced Wednesday morning that the eighth-year football coach intended to remain at his alma mater.
Word didn't come from Gundy, who never confirmed publicly that he was being pursued for other jobs. Robert Allen, who co-authored a book about OSU's 2011 Big 12 championship season with the coach, popped the info while hosting his Stillwater-based Triple Play Sports radio show.
"I've got some news," Allen said. "Mike Gundy is staying at Oklahoma State."
Later, during a regularly scheduled guest appearance on the Tulsa Sports Animal radio show, Allen confirmed (without outing his source) that Gundy is staying and is not in conversations with other programs regarding a coaching job.
Said Allen, "I know that Mike Gundy has decided not to pursue any other opportunities and decided to stay."
Messages were sent to OSU officials in an attempt to determine if they had been informed by Gundy that he is staying. The messages were not returned. Athletic director Mike Holder, in attendance for a home basketball game Wednesday night against South Florida, was approached by a Tulsa World reporter and declined comment.
The Gundy news came shortly after Bruce Feldman of CBS Sports posted on Twitter that a source said Gundy had been offered the Tennessee job. That bit of Twitter-spawned drama was short-lived, but other sources later suggested Gundy could have taken the Volunteers job.
Gundy was the subject of rampant speculation one day earlier when it was reported he was bound for Arkansas. Subsequent reports nixed those reports and the Razorbacks introduced former Wisconsin coach Bret Bielema as their new coach Wednesday.
Tennessee and Arkansas interviewed Gundy one season after agent Jimmy Sexton negotiated the coach an eight-year contract extension at OSU worth (including a retirement package) more than $29 million.
Sources indicated Gundy's motivation wasn't to leverage more money out of OSU. Moreso, he looked at other positions because he isn't satisfied with the control he has over certain aspects of his program, including scheduling.
Gundy has said on multiple occasions he wants to take it easy in non-league games in order to have a chance to compete for Big 12 titles. OSU will play Mississippi State in a 2013 season opener in Houston and CBS Sports reported that Florida State and the Cowboys could collide in 2014 in Arlington, Texas.
Did OSU offer Gundy incentives or concessions to get him to stay? That's a question for Gundy. Or OSU officials, who did not respond when the question was pitched to them Wednesday afternoon.
It also became apparent during the course of the Gundy saga that the bridge between the coach and administration is in need of repair.
Said a source, "Something needs to happen within the athletic department regarding the relationship between the head coach and the athletic director."
OSU will face Purdue in the Heart of Dallas Bowl on Jan. 1 at the Cotton Bowl. Purdue, which fired coach Danny Hope after a 6-6 season, announced Wednesday that Kent State's Darrell Hazell would be Hope's successor.
Original Print Headline: Gundy to stay put at Oklahoma State
Jimmie Tramel 918-581-8389
Oklahoma State's Mike Gundy stresses a point during a Nov. 17 game against Texas Tech in Stillwater. MATT BARNARD/Tulsa World
Mike Gundy: OSU football coach staying put after flirtations with open positions at Arkansas and Tennessee