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The Top 5 Quotes from Mike Gundy’s Post-Arizona State News Conference

Gundy talks quarterbacks, halftime adjustments and more.



TEMPE, Arizona — Mike Gundy went to the desert with as many quarterbacks as prongs on the Sun Devils’ fork and came home with a win.

Oklahoma State beat Arizona State 27-15 on Saturday at Mountain America Stadium. Here are Gundy’s best quotes from his postgame news conference. A full video of his news conference is below.

1. The QB Competition Continues

The Cowboys continued their unorthodox quarterback competition in the desert.

Alan Bowman, Gunnar Gundy and Garret Rangel (in that order) each played four series in OSU’s win against the Sun Devils. The order was different than it was in Week 1, but the results were similar.

“We just rotate them through,” Gundy said. “Like, Rangel was up, Bowman was up, Gunnar was up. So now we put Bowman up, Gunnar up and Rangel up. Just like in kindergarten — single file.”

As a group, the three amigos threw for 191 yards and two touchdowns.

Bowman: 11-for-16 (69%), 113 passing yards
Gundy: 5-for-7 (71%), 32 passing yards, one passing touchdown
Rangel: 6-for-9 (67%), 46 passing yards, one passing touchdown

Gundy said he sees the competition continuing into the Cowboys’ Week 3 matchup with South Alabama.

“I thought they all played good,” Gundy said. “Without watching tape, I thought they all played pretty good.”

2. Halftime Adjustment Takes Running Game from 0 to 113

The Cowboys’ run game got off the a rough start against Central Arkansas; it got off to a horrible start against Arizona State.

But just like in their game against the Bears, the Cowboys rebounded in the second half of Saturday’s win against Arizona State. After rushing 12 times for zero yards in the first half against the Sun Devils, the Pokes rushed 19 times for 113 yards (5.9 yards per carry) against ASU.

“We changed concepts a little bit,” Gundy said. “We went from a little bit of an outside midzone to more of an inside zone. We were having problems. Backside backer was through on us. We couldn’t get to him, so we changed our scheme up a little bit.

“In the second half, again without watching the tape, we ran the ball good enough for the rest of the year. If we can run like that in the first half and second half of the upcoming games, we’ll be fine.”

3. The Cowboys Practiced Fourth-Down Defense

Arizona State went for it on fourth down five times Saturday and were successful only one time.

It was a big reason as to why the Cowboys left Tempe unbeaten as two turnovers on downs led to 14 OSU points. Although that might seem like OSU dug deep and found a way, Gundy said his team worked on it this offseason after the Cowboys gave up 17 fourth-down conversions in 2022.

“We’ve worked on fourth downs more than anybody in the country in spring and August,” Gundy said. “I’m gonna guess we did because the coaches kept telling me, ‘Coach, we’ve worked fourth down so much.’ I feel like teams want to go for fourth downs more, and we weren’t very good last year on fourth downs. And we didn’t practice it.

“You guys know it’s 4th-and-4. A lot of times, believe it or not, the cover guys don’t play the sticks. Sometimes they’ll let them catch it for five. In a conventional pass play, that’s OK. But when it’s 4th-and-4 and they catch it for five, it’s usually a first down.”

4. Cowboys Mix Up Defenses

After a vanilla Week 1, the Cowboys showed a little bit more defensively against Arizona State.

The Cowboys mixed three-man and four-man defensive fronts, which led to the Cowboys shutting out the Sun Devils for the final 40:07 of the game.

Digging deeper in the playbook got Collin Oliver more involved, as the former Freshman All-American finished with seven tackles, two tackles for loss, a pass breakup and a forced fumble.

“We did some different stuff tonight,” Gundy said. “We played quite a bit of even front. We played odd, but we played even — mixed it up. Ultimately that’s where I’d like to get to. I don’t want to do too much. I want to be good at something, but we played odd front and we played even front. It allowed CO [Collin Oliver] to get on the edge and become more of a factor.”

5. Watch Out for Rashada

The Sun Devils might struggle this year, but Gundy says watch out for quarterback Jaden Rashada.

A former top 50 recruit, Rashada threw for 167 yards and a touchdown against the Cowboys. Gundy said he had a nice conversation with first-year coach Kenny Dillingham, welcoming him to the Big 12.

“I’m not looking forward to playing his quarterback for three more years,” Gundy said. “I watched him warm up, and he can spin it. Once he figures out what he’s doing, it could be an issue for people.”

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