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The Top 5 Quotes from Mike Gundy’s Monday News Conference

Gundy talks quarterbacks, Kendal Daniels and more.



[Devin Wilber/PFB]

STILLWATER — Mike Gundy on Monday met with reporters for the third time this spring.

Gundy, Oklahoma State’s coach, got into everything from quarterback play to bringing physicality back to the offensive line. Here are his five best quotes from the availability (with a bonus funny quote at the end).

1. Bowman ‘Very Similar’ to Spencer Sanders

A lot has been said this offseason of OSU moving away from a mobile quarterback like Spencer Sanders.

In four seasons, Sanders rushed for 1,956 yards and 18 touchdowns with the Cowboys. Meanwhile Michigan/Texas Tech transfer Alan Bowman has rushed for -9 yards and two touchdowns in five seasons of college football.

Gundy spoke last week on the need for college quarterbacks to be mobile enough — not that they need to make game-breaking rushing plays, but that they need to be able to buy time in the pocket. Gundy said Monday that seems to be the type of mobility that the Pokes are getting with Bowman.

“Bowman is what I thought Bowman was,” Gundy said. “He’s acting very mature. Handles himself extremely well. We’re rotating him in with all three groups. Never says a word. Has the ability to avoid rush, move around good and make a play.

“When I was evaluating him the other day, very similar to Spencer, except Spencer chose to make plays with his legs. So far Bowman is choosing to make plays buying himself time and use his arm.”

2. Young Quarterbacks on Track

Outside of Bowman, the Cowboys’ quarterback room is young.

Gunnar Gundy is a redshirt sophomore with redshirt freshman Garret Rangel and true freshman Zane Flores. Gundy said earlier in the spring that the quarterbacks would rotate with the first, second and third groups and that the battle for QB1 could continue into August. But, Gundy said Monday that he likes what he sees from the younger guys.

“Both Gunnar and Rangel are progressing like you would think freshman would moving into their next year — redshirt freshman or freshman,” Gundy said. “Just maturity, getting it, seeing things they didn’t see a year ago. The game has slowed down for them.

“Then Zane has done good. Zane is showing us what we thought he was last year — very athletic, very powerful arm. But he’s trying to figure it out. You can imagine, there’s a lot going on for him.”

3. Kendal Daniels’ Role in the 3-3-5

Bryan Nardo’s base 3-3-5 defense brings some differences for OSU’s personnel.

One of the most notable ones is Collin Oliver moving from defensive end to linebacker, but it also sounds like 6-foot-4, 213-pound Kendal Daniels will be all over the place, which should be an exciting proposition for OSU fans.

“That position where he is at in the middle of the field [the rover] is very important,” Gundy said. “I don’t have any experience in this defense. The coaches that I talk to that have experience in it stress the importance of that particular position.

“… We saw him [toward the end of last season] violently tackle in the box. Two or three yards off the line or behind the line. He should be able to do that. We can sit and talk all we want, but he’s got a body that you and I don’t have. He can take that as long as he wants. If he continues to play physical — and he already has the gift that he’s really rangy and really long and he sees the ball — so he’s got safety written all over him for the next 12 years if he’ll follow through on it. So far he seems to be getting better.”

4. Adjusting Mindset along the Offensive Line

Oklahoma State did not rush the ball well in 2022.

The Cowboys ranked ninth in the Big 12 and 97th nationally at 125.5 yards a game. Gundy said the Pokes need to rush for 150 yards a game moving forward and the route to get there involves being more physical, something he said they’ve gotten away from in recent years.

“We’ve really stressed physicality with them,” Gundy said. “They’re accepting that. We’re not there. As you guys watched us the last couple years, we’ve got a lot of work to do in our physicality to be able to rush the football. They’re aware of that. They understand the importance of it. They’re working toward it, but it’s not gonna be accomplished over the next two weeks. I need it to get accomplished by halfway through August.

“It’s also not their fault. A lot of what we do here, as we’ve changed over the last four, five, six years, didn’t stress the physicality on them that we had my first 12 or 14 years here, where we stressed a lot of it based on play calls, sets, formations, tight ends, full backs — lot of different things. Most of the time in life, we get what we ask for. We started to get away from physicality based on our concepts and schemes. Now we have to find what’s the best way to get good concepts and schemes, be able to exploit defenses with our skill, but also what we learned is if we lose our physicality, it’s not fun.

“We told them the truth and we also took the blame. I took the blame, but now I need the adjustments to take place.”

5. Arland Bruce Gets John Paul Richardson Comparison

The OSU receiver room has gone through some major changes this offseason with John Paul Richardson, Stephon Johnson Jr., Bryson Green and Braylin Presley all hitting the portal.

Richardson’s exit in particular seemed like a big blow with him being named a bowl captain as a sophomore before heading to TCU for his junior season. The Cowboys’ answer to Richardson leaving was Iowa transfer Arland Bruce IV. Listed at 5-10, 200 pounds, Bruce had 512 yards of total offense and six touchdowns in two seasons with the Hawkeyes.

“Arland is a lot like what we had with JP,” Gundy said. “He’s shifty, good hands, physical, very similar. … It was interesting when [Richardson] left, we started looking for a guy that’s what we thought he was, and we brought [Bruce] in and that’s kind of what we think he is.”

Bonus Quote

Gundy was asked about the intricacies of recruiting his son, Gunnar Gundy. He gave an eloquent answer on the topic, but also threw in a classic Gundy zinger:

“Well first off is I sleep with Gunnar’s mom, so that gives me a fighting chance right there,” Gundy said. “Sometimes — if I’m allowed.”

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