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Gundy on the Coaching Carousel that Led to OC Dunn and QB Coach Rattay

Gundy talks what stood out about Kasey Dunn as the OC and Tim Rattay as the QB coach.

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STILLWATER — The coaching carousel was an interesting one for Mike Gundy this offseason.

Gundy is no newcomer when it comes to having to find new offensive coordinators, but it isn’t a position many coaches have to fill back-to-back years. After Sean Gleeson left for Rutgers after a year stay in Stillwater, Gundy had to “rerecruit” receivers coach Kasey Dunn, who was on his way out after nine years on Gundy’s staff to be the OC at UNLV. Dunn eventually got OSU’s offensive coordinator position, but hiring from within, left another hole for Gundy at quarterbacks coach, a spot that usually went with the OC title.

“At one point, Dunn was going to go to UNLV, and he’s always wanted to be an offensive coordinator,” Gundy said. “We had to rerecruit him, which we did. We gave him years and money, and then about a week later, Gleeson decided to go back to home, closer to his home, which was a good opportunity for him. Most of those guys that I’ve hired don’t get those opportunities as early as he did. He got several opportunities this year, and he decided to get back closer to home and be with (Greg) Schiano, so after that I interviewed several people for whatever job that I wanted to move forward with.

“After several interviews I found out that Dunn was the right guy at this particular time. He served his time, and he’s ready. But I needed to make sure based on what my options were out there, particularly if we could find a quarterback coach that was what I was looking for as a quarterback coach.”

So, Gundy hired NFL veteran Tim Rattay. Rattay coached the Washington Redskins’ quarterbacks this past season. Rattay starred at Louisiana Tech before a seven year NFL playing career where he spent time with the 49ers, Buccaneers, Titans and Cardinals.

“I think he’s fantastic with technique, footwork, reads, eyes, developing young people, tremendous success playing the position in college, played a long time in the NFL at 6-foot tall, which is not easy to do,” Gundy said. “He did a good job in college coaching and recruiting quarterbacks, developing quarterbacks, and then got a year’s experience in the NFL, which is football 247. I like his demeanor. I think he’s a good fit here. He’s somewhat local based on he’s spent so many years at LA Tech. I think he’ll really be good at developing quarterbacks.”

This 2020 OSU squad has high hopes, as evident with the proclamations of national championships at Tuesday’s pep rally. One of the many good reasons surrounding Dunn’s hire was that there won’t be an acclimation period with him and OSU. It’s just plug and play.

“There’s not any learning curve for him,” Gundy said. “He knows the offense. The only adjustment he’ll make is calling plays on gameday and being in the press box. The rest of it he already knows. … Dunn just has to get used to calling plays. Everything else he’s already done.”

Rattay will have to learn some terminology, but Gundy said he liked the information Rattay was able to convey in his interview for the job. Gundy said he is “comfortable turning the quarterbacks over to him and not really being involved.”

To go with his apparent interview skills, Rattay also has some recruiting roots that could be beneficial for OSU. Rattay is a LA Tech legend. He holds the program’s record for career touchdown passes and was inducted into the Louisiana Tech Athletic Hall of Fame.

Louisiana has been a fruitful recruiting ground for OSU as of late. OSU had five players on its roster from the state on the Cowboys’ 2019 roster. OSU also has a 2021 and 2022 commit from Louisiana.

“We’ve essentially come to the conclusion that northern Louisiana is basically east Texas,” Gundy said. “East Texas has been fantastic for us, same kind of people that live in Stillwater. The young men feel comfortable in this environment, more of a college town, which is a lot like east Texas. That north and northwest Louisiana, central Louisiana, we’ve gotten really good players there per capita if you take the number of them and how many have been successful here, graduating and playing, the percentage had been extremely high. We’re excited about that.”

But it doesn’t stop there. Rattay is a native of Arizona. Even more recently, the Cowboys have started moving west for recruits, having 2020 commits from California, Arizona and Utah. The Cowboys have particularly started looking toward the Pacific in regards to quarterbacks, with Dru Brown, Brendan Costello and Shane Illingworth all coming from California.

“We think there’s some good players there that not a lot of schools as far east as us recruit,” Gundy said. “Unless they’re a national recruit, most of them go west, so we want to give them an option to come east. If they’re a three star or a four star, a lot of times those guys don’t have a chance to go back east, we’re going to give them that opportunity.”

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