What? Does the title confuse you considering the unfortunate chain of events stemming from a 4th down play call? That whole mess has been written and discussed more in the last few days than the presidential debate. Almost. No, this isn’t about that. Well, not totally. What’s at focus here is Mike Gundy’s straight-shooting attitude when it comes to this conference’s hierarchy.
You may recall during the offseason when Gundy gave his opinion on Big 12 expansion. Never shying away from voicing his opinion, Gundy held nothing back when he claimed that the conference was clueless.
“I don’t understand expansion right now. I don’t know what we’re doing. I think right now we are pretty clueless.”
Who can disagree with him? This is a conference that said thanks, but no thanks to current 10th ranked Louisville. A conference that lost a total of seven national titles when Nebraska, Colorado and Texas A&M left along with Missouri. Because of the lack of foresight and downright 5th Century Rome-style leadership, the Big 12 is left to scrape the bottom of the barrel in some respect if it is to survive.
Gundy’s confusion and opinion of the conference came from simply not knowing what the plan was. In his mind, adding programs like Houston or Memphis don’t move the needle. There are many that still agree, and point out that adding Houston will harm recruiting for schools like Oklahoma State.
Fast forward to this week when Gundy was forced to answer for the end of the Central Michigan game. Indeed it was a black mark not only for Oklahoma State, but the Big 12 as a whole. The end of the game brought forth the honest side of Gundy once again.
In his weekly press conference, Gundy likened the Big 12 officials stationed in Dallas — who watch every game and can communicate with replay officials in the booth of every conference game — to a sleeping cartoon character leaned up against the wall of a fort. A comparison that is better understood visually. But the meaning is still inferred. The Big 12 dropped the ball, fell asleep at the wheel and cost one of their stronger programs a win.
Yes, Oklahoma State should have not been in that position in the first place. Cowboy fans more than likely did not expect the game to be in doubt deep in the fourth quarter against a team from the MAC. Gundy even agrees. But the lack of leadership of the Big 12 has now dripped down into the officiating level.
This is a conference which features a fan-run Twitter account parodying Big 12 officials. A Twitter account with 21.5 thousand followers currently. Gundy’s frustration with the leadership of this conference is apparently shared with thousands of other Big 12 fans.
Coaches like Bob Stoops or Charlie Strong have been relatively quiet on sharing opinions, or true opinions on the way the Big 12 has been run the past five seasons. Of course, programs like Oklahoma and Texas will be fine regardless of if the Big 12 expands or disbands. Gundy does not enjoy that luxury and has been very truthful in his answers regarding the conference.
Anytime the mulleted-one speaks on the Big 12, it is a breath of fresh air. Bravo, Mr. Gundy.