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Washington and Co. Teased Mason Rudolph About His SI Cover



However you feel about Sports Illustrated — and many of you have made it quite clear that you have very strong feelings about this — it’s undeniable that Mason Rudolph being a recent cover boy is good for Oklahoma State University.

Mike Gundy said as much at his recent Cowboy Caravan in Tulsa when he called it a “big deal for OSU to be on the cover.”

Rudolph of course downplayed the entire thing, but his teammates said recently they’ve given him some flak. James Washington may have been the ringleader.

“We got on to him a little bit,” said Washington. “We always give him a hard time no matter what it is. But I’m happy for him. (We got on to him) for the pose. He’s not the type of guy to run 50 yards touchdowns … Sometimes he thinks he does. We gave him a hard time about that.”

When he was reminded that Rudolph is running on the cover, Washington said, “Yeah, probably running out of bounds or something.”

The whole thing was pretty great. But it also points to a larger narrative — that Oklahoma State is getting all kinds of attention leading up to this season. Sports Illustrated, the Coaches Poll, CBS Sports All-American teams. The whole thing.

“I say it’s good, but that was last year, not this year,” said cornerback A.J. Green of the love OSU has been getting from the media. “We have something more to prove and we’re coming for more this year than we did last year. It’s good and it’s a stepping stone, but it’s a block we need to step over.”

I know Mike Gundy wouldn’t trade it. He’s all about leveraging whatever foothold OSU has in the national media conscience for the good of the future of the program. That’s part of the reason OSU is playing on Thursday and Friday evening to start the season.

So no matter how all of this ends, this summer and lead-in to the fall have been fantastic fun. I just hope the wave doesn’t dissipate once the lights come on in September and October.

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