ARLINGTON, Texas — The main question media members wanted to know from Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy on the first day of Big 12 Media Days was who will be quarterbacking this year’s offense.
Gundy made it clear Monday the issue is undecided. The plan is to split the reps 50-50 during preseason camp until coaches find their guy.
It will either be Hawaii graduate transfer Dru Brown or redshirt freshman Spencer Sanders. There is no definite timetable on when the decision will be made.
“We would always prefer to have one guy, but somebody has to take the reins,” Gundy said. “They have to prove to us that they give us the best chance to move the ball and score points, that they can orchestrate the offense effectively to give us the best chance to win the game.”
Gundy doesn’t have a history of holding out on his quarterback decisions for too long. If the quarterback battle were to continue into preseason camp, this would be just the second time in his 15-year tenure he was unsure on who the face of his offense would be heading into August.
The last time Gundy was faced with this situation was ahead of the 2013 season with quarterbacks J.W. Walsh and Clint Chelf. The battle between Walsh and Chelf spilled into the regular season.
Chelf started the first game against of the 2013 season against Mississippi State, but Walsh took over after two series and was named the starter for Week 2. Chelf ended the season as the starter.
The Cowboys could be in a similar situation this year if neither player separates himself.
“People say if all things are equal you just play the young guy. I don’t think we’ll do that,” Gundy said. “If all things are equal we play both guys. Dru came all the way across the country to be a part of our organization, so we owe him the opportunity and I just feel strongly in that area.”
There is some speculation Sanders is the front runner, but Gundy said if Sanders was the guy he would have said so already. Gundy stood on his track record to show this quarterback battle is indeed a battle.
“The only evidence I can bring to the table is my history that we do that,” Gundy said regarding announcing the starter as soon as he knows. “I think it’s beneficial for a team to know who its quarterback is.”
Gundy admitted there is a little concern about splitting reps between the two quarterbacks because of the familiarity with the other offensive players. He said the timing with the quarterback and receivers could possibly be a factor, but OSU’s top receiver, Tylan Wallace, said the splitting of reps hasn’t bothered him.
“It hasn’t been that bad actually,” Wallace said. “We’ve been going out on the weekends on our off days. We’ve been out getting throws in with both the quarterbacks and kind of making up for lost time you can say.”
Center Johnny Wilson isn’t concerned either. He is comfortable with snapping to either player and is confident in both to lead the offense.
“They both trust me and I trust them, Wilson said. “We hang out off the field and on the field…I think it’s just a bonding thing. Once you get those quarterbacks to trust you they don’t have to worry about the line so much. They’re able to go back here and see the field and do their jobs.”