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Incoming AD Chad Weiberg, Outgoing AD Mike Holder Make Big Bets on Boynton

Boynton has the confidence of OSU’s ADs, both present and future.

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Facing intense scrutiny after hiring — then losing — star coach Brad Underwood to Illinois all within the span of a year, OSU athletic director Mike Holder made a bet in March 2017 on then-assistant coach Mike Boynton.

With Oklahoma State’s problem reeling from Underwood’s one-and-done season, leaving the fanbase and even those inside OSU’s offices shell-shocked, Holder saw something in Boynton that many did not. After a quiet search that many hoped would include Archie Miller (now fired from Indiana), Doug Gottlieb (still doing media things) and others, Holder tabbed Boynton as the program’s next head coach. He was formally introduced March 24.

“At the end of the day, we view coaching from the same perspective,” Holder said about Boynton. “All of the qualities that I value resonate in him. He said one thing that really stuck with me, that coaching is about leadership and family, and I agree with that wholeheartedly.”

With Holder’s imminent retirement later this summer and OSU administrator Chad Weiberg set to succeed him, Weiberg on Monday made a similar wager as his soon-to-be-predecessor in betting big on the 39-year-old Boynton, inking him to a reported seven-year deal worth $3 million annually. This was no doubt not a unilateral call by Weiberg, whose reign as the AD won’t formally commence until this summer, or by Holder, who is a lame duck not equipped to make such a huge decision without support. But for Weiberg, it will unquestionably shape the early years of his time as the department’s top dog and how he’ll be viewed; he had to sign off on this.

Boynton garnered attention across the country as a candidate for various openings and almost-openings, per Matt Norlander, and might’ve been the top target at South Carolina — his alma mater — had the program not stood by Frank Martin, which was in question a week ago.

Instead, Boynton is in it for the long haul on a long-term deal.

Details of the deal are unclear, but one thing has already crystallized: Both Holder and Weiberg are willing to put their name beside Boynton and his bright future. With so much at stake for both — in 2017 for Holder and now in 2021 for Weiberg — it’s an especially powerful vote of confidence.

“It’s one thing to talk the talk. It’s another to walk the walk,” said Holder of Boynton in 2017, explaining what he saw in him when he made him head coach. “I think he’s going to change lives because of the man he is and what he stands for.”

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