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Fuente, Gundy Talk About the Importance of 10 Wins and Ending the Season Right



Oklahoma State is looking for its first three-year streak of 10+ wins on Thursday when it tees it up with Virginia Tech in the Camping World Bowl. The Hokies are going for their own mini-streak of 10+ wins after going 10-3 last season with a huge win over West Virginia in the Belk Bowl.

VT won 10+ in both 1995-1996, 1999-2000 and (incredibly) from 2004-2011 so this would be streak No. 4 of two or more seasons having won 10+ games and the first for anyone not named Frank Beamer.

“One of the best things about being a head coach is getting to see your team celebrate or enjoy the fruits of their labor,” said VT head coach Justin Fuente. “And so, you know, for me, it’s about that fulfillment, a chance to get to 10 victories, which is kind of a number that Virginia Tech had been synonymous with for many years, and a chance to send our seniors out the right way.”

Fuente knows, however, that the road to 10 Ws runs through an opponent that should probably be involved in a better bowl than it is this year.

“We take pride and value in preparing for the bowl game,” he added. “I think that’s been the standard of Virginia Tech long before I got there. You always want to keep those things going, but it’s not something that I brought up. I certainly haven’t with our players. It’s been mostly about, you know, the opportunity to get to that number 10. And I wish we could play a much worse opponent to get to 10, quite honestly.

“But that’s also the fun part of it, is you get to play somebody that’s really, really good, and it’s going to be a tremendous challenge, you know, for our entire team to try and get this thing pulled off.”

Mike Gundy agreed.

“What Justin’s saying is right,” said Gundy. “We get asked the question, or I do, a lot about the personal part of it. It has nothing to do with me. It has nothing to do with the staff. It’s all about the players. They’re the ones that put in all the time and effort. This is a violent sport. It’s a very demanding sport.

“These guys compete and play. They’re hurt most of the time. They’re tired. They learn to be resilient. That’s what’s so great about college football. And I think all of us want to win the last game. It’s always fun to win the last game. You want to do it for your seniors. You want to do it for the team.”

The Pokes are looking for their ninth 10-win season ever to go along with 1984, 1987, 1988, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2015 and 2016. Mike Gundy has been involved in all but one of those (the 1984 campaign).

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