Mike Gundy Previews Regular Season Finale Against BYU

Cowboys can clinch a spot in the Big 12 Championship Game with a win over the Cougars

Wednesday, November 22nd 2023, 11:15 am

By: Scott Pfeil


Head coach Mike Gundy met with the media Monday in Stillwater to discuss Oklahoma State’s victory over Houston and the regular-season finale against BYU. Here are some of his comments: 

 Head Coach Mike Gundy 

 On the offensive line’s performance against Houston:  

“They covered guys up and played pretty well. Houston was all over the place with three-down, four-down. They were in sell-out and stop run defense, edge pressure, middle pressure and safety pressure. Our offensive linemen held it together and covered guys up. Eventually, in most cases, when that happens, if you’ll just stay the course throughout the game, you’re going to pop through. You’re going to get some runs and downfield throws, and that’s what happened for us in the second half.”  

 On Nick Martin:  

“He’s really good. He was that way in high school. We liked him in high school for just those reasons. He would run and strike. We could go back to signing day his senior year, one thing I said about him is he’s a throwback, old-school football player. He plays violently. He plays with great speed; you don’t see that a lot nowadays. That’s why we liked him. He was undersized, and it kept him from being really heavily recruited in my opinion. He’s grown into his own. He keeps those characteristics. He loves to play football. He likes to practice. He cares about his team. He’s tough and he can run. Those are good things for defensive guys.”  

 On Jaden Bray returning to the lineup:  

“It helps, it gives us depth so we can practice better during the week. The difficult aspect of having multiple injuries at one position is during the week you can’t practice very much. Guys can only go so many reps, so we were really lacking in practice opportunities. Having guys back gives us a chance to practice better during the week, which gives us a better chance to play well on Saturday. He started to feel pretty good, I didn’t know how much he could play. When you’re out for four or five weeks and you get back in, human nature is a little timid. He gives us another dimension. He can go up and get the ball, he’s long and rangy, he can jump. It’s nice to have him back with the team.”  

On what to expect from BYU: 

“We're facing another option team. They’re going to run triple option and they do it in different ways. They run the speed option, they run the read-zone triple option. They like to use the tight end. They split him out to a single and use him as a number three receiver. They put him at the front of a bunch set. They like him. They're going to run the traditional running game they’ve always had. Defensively, they base out of a four-down. They'll play some three-down. They're going to bring their linebackers a lot. What we saw Saturday, in my opinion, we'll see the same thing with them. They like to crossfire their inside backers over and over and over and over. So, I'm sure they'll do that. They're going to play man coverage against us. They’ll play a little three deep to mix it up, but they're going to get up and press us and play man, cross linebackers and insert an extra safety to stop the run.”

On the impact of adding BYU into the Big 12: 

“Yeah, they're a good addition to the league. I think when it comes to coast-to-coast, their logo would trigger in most people's minds as a Power Five school forever. I thought they were. I didn't know what Power Five was or different conferences or levels when I was in junior high, high school, and in college. I always thought they were what people consider a big conference school. They've always played difficult schedules, so they're a really good addition and I think that's one of the reasons the fans have been to so many games and sold out the stadium. I think they're excited about seeing the new teams in the conference.”  

On OSU fans showing up in Houston: 

“They’ve done a great job. I’ve complimented them throughout the year. I think they were really excited about the new conference and the new teams. I know they wanted to go to Arizona [and] they wanted to go to Florida. We have a huge alumni base in Houston. I think, outside of Oklahoma, it might be the largest. I’m not for sure, but I know it’s one of the largest with all of your oil and gas and engineers and such down in that area. I thought we had more fans there than the other team, which is a complement to our people. It certainly helps us. Our crowd supported the team and the guys felt it I’m sure, and it contributes to a better season for us.” 


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