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Gundy would put Tide ahead of his Cowboys

Mike Gundy AP

He’s a man!  He’s 40(ish)!  And, apparently, Mike Gundy‘s also brutally honest when it comes to his football team.

A great deal of angst has been spilled and tears shed over who should fall immediately behind top-ranked LSU and play for the BcS title.  A solid case could be made for several teams, from Alabama to Oklahoma State to Stanford to Virginia Tech to, yes, even Houston.

The main focus, though, has seemingly centered of late on the Tide and the Cowboys.  Each team has just one loss, but in those defeats lies the crux of the argument — UA lost to unbeaten LSU at home in overtime, while OSU tripped against 6-5 Iowa State on the road.

If you’re among those who argue Oklahoma State’s loss is worse than Alabama’s and thus deserves to be ranked behind the Tide, take comfort in the fact that you’re in good company.  Company, as it turns out, includes the Cowboys’ own head coach.

“If somebody sat me down and said (I) had to make a decision,” Gundy said Monday by way of the Daily Oklahoman, “with where we’re at right now, Alabama lost to what would be the No. 1 team in the country (LSU), and Oklahoma State lost to Iowa State.

“In our situation, if I was doing it fair, I don’t know how I could put us in front of (Alabama) right now.”

While some, including Gundy apparently, look solely at the weaknesses of the losses in assessing each team’s worthiness, others put a great deal of weight in the strength of the respective team’s wins.  On that front, the two teams are evenly matched.  Div. 1-A opponents Alabama’s faced currently own a .550 winning percentage, while Oklahoma State’s win at a .547 clip.  The Cowboys have faced four teams that appeared in the Top 25 of the most recent BcS rankings — No. 11 Kansas State, No. 17 Baylor, No. 22 Texas, No. 25 Missouri — while three of the Tide’s opponents — No. 1 LSU, No. 8 Arkansas, No. 21 Penn State — fall into that category.

Oklahoma State still has one regular season game left, however, against 9-2 and 10th-ranked (in the BcS) Oklahoma in Bedlam Saturday.  A win by the Cowboys, particularly if it’s a blowout, could change the minds of some voters.  Gundy, who is not one of the 59 coaches who vote in the USA Today poll, said he’s only concerned with taking care of business in Bedlam and then allowing the will of voters to decide which team deserves a shot — or another shot, as the case may be — at knocking off the Bayou Bengals in New Orleans.

“I’m not saying that I wouldn’t (politick),” Gundy said. “…I don’t spend much time thinking about it, and so if somebody made me do it, I would probably say something. I would do it uncomfortably. But I wouldn’t mention it until after the game, and at that time, it may be too late.

“I just think we need to prepare and do the best we can to win this game, and then move forward from that point on.”

Moving forward for OSU would likely include preparing for a BcS bowl other than the title game as it’s nearly a foregone conclusion that, regardless of what happens this weekend and for better or worse, we’re set for an LSU-Alabama rematch.

At this point I’d say something snarky about the BcS’ “every game matters” mantra and the dire need for a playoff, but it gets tiresome urinating into the same stiff breeze year after year, so why bother?

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43 Responses to “Gundy would put Tide ahead of his Cowboys”
  1. thekatman says: Nov 29, 2011 11:55 AM

    For what it’s worth, ESPN states: “The 3 best college football teams in the country are LSU, Alabama and USC… everyone else is at #10, 11 and beyond, but these 3 teams are far and away the best in the country”.

  2. blitz4848 says: Nov 29, 2011 12:00 PM

    Refreshing to see a coach look at it honestly like most fans—that’s all anyone can ask.

    Probably won’t be receiving any Christmas bonus from Boone Pickens—-lol!!!!

  3. Deb says: Nov 29, 2011 12:10 PM

    Thanks to Gundy for his frankness. And a big thanks for posting that link to his previous rant. Needed a reminder that these are amateur athletes who leave their hearts on the field. A lot of factors contributed to our LSU loss. It wasn’t all kicker Cade Foster’s fault.

    This guy has joined Mike Leach on my list of coaches who give great pressers :)

  4. texbornlsufan says: Nov 29, 2011 12:13 PM

    USC!!!!!!!!!! Give it a break!!!!!!!!!

    Didn’t this team lose to Arizona State and Stanford? And is any one of those teams even playing for a conference championship? Hell Arizona State even fired there coach!!!!

    Talk USC next year as they are still paying the price for Bush and Carroll

  5. infrno says: Nov 29, 2011 12:17 PM

    Ha, Gundy is being political right now. He doesn’t want to be seen as lobbying for his team. I’m curious as to whether someone asked him a question about it, or if he brought it up on his own. If the latter, then he’s trying to play a little reverse psychology, if the former, then maybe not. Either way, I can guarantee you he will say otherwise if they win Saturday.

  6. ancientcougar says: Nov 29, 2011 12:20 PM

    Let OSU beat Oklahoma and then see what Gundy says.

  7. boomerdt says: Nov 29, 2011 12:35 PM

    What a Schmuck.

    I fully expect OSU to beat the crap out of my Sooners on Saturday… they have a better offense and the weapons to beat OU’s secondary badly. They also have a great team that simply didn’t show up at Iowa State (and they still almost won).

    After hearing his honesty about his football team I have come to a different conclusion (seeing I thought higher of his squad than he). I hope my Sooners send his dumb a$$ to a loss.

    If you can’t give your own team praise – don’t expect anyone else to. Boomer Sooner.

  8. woebegong says: Nov 29, 2011 12:48 PM

    I am not so sure that Okie State can beat the Sooners. When the Sooners come to play, they seem mighty tough to me. Of course, the only game I have seen them in was against Texas and I am not so sure that was a good indication, since Texas was rated too high to begin with.
    I think the Okie State coach praised his team, but the strength of your opponent and the conference they play in goes a long way in determining things. I think the SEC, has been, for the last few years at least, the strongest conference in the country. The saying, “On Any Given Saturday”, really applies there. I am a big UGA fan, and can assure you, that it is for sure true.

  9. Deb says: Nov 29, 2011 12:49 PM

    @boomerdt …

    Have to tell you, watching early in the season, I thought Oklahoma was the scariest team out there. Haven’t followed you guys, so I don’t know what went wrong. But aren’t you selling the Sooners a little short?

  10. thekatman says: Nov 29, 2011 1:06 PM

    It’s all about finishing and if there were a playoff, as in the Pete Carroll years, USC would beat everyone out there right now… and they have fewer players than anyone at the moment.

    LSU? A very good team and my money is on LSU to wint eh BCS title game; however, if they were playing USC for tht game, my money would go to the Trojans.

    For now, Geaux Tigers…… beat whoever you’re playing in the game.

  11. pricecube says: Nov 29, 2011 2:08 PM

    So just out of curiosity what happens if UGA pulls some kind of miracle and defeats LSU. Does LSU still play for NC or does that leave the SEC out of the NC game entirely? I mean you have to still rate LSU ahead of Bama right? They beat them and won the SEC West… and UGA has to go to a BCS game as SEC Champion… and heck Boise State absolutely dominated UGA where would that leave them? What a complete mess that would be. I would love it. Maybe we would finally get a playoff.

  12. nps6724 says: Nov 29, 2011 2:24 PM


    The same USC who lost to Stanford and 6-6 Arizona State and beat Oregon by 3? The same Oregon who got dominated by LSU? THAT USC? Is this also the same USC who barely beat Minnesota (by 2), Arizona (by 7), and Utah (by 9)?

    LSU and Bama would both beat the ever-living crap out of USC. Like they’ve done to all of their opponents except each other. Even with USC’s shellacking of UCLA 50-0, the Trojans average only 12 more points/game than they allow. Bama and LSU both more than DOUBLE that.

  13. woebegong says: Nov 29, 2011 2:29 PM


    Until every AQ conference plays an extra game, to decide the championship of their conference, it is all hypothetical. LSU is basically playing that extra game,
    As for Boise beating UGA in the first game of the season. There is no taking away the victory, but over the entire season, UGA has shown improvement every game. Boise hasn’t or they would not have lost to an unranked team like they did, this year and last. I think if the two teams played next week, you would see a little different outcome, but that is just my opinion. Boise really has no argument it can make for being in the NC game. They haven’t played the caliber of opponent LSU or Alabama has played. They are good, but no where as good as those two. I am also aware that Houston is undefeated, but can you compare their opponents strength against what LSU and Alabama have played. Conference USA is a long way from even being in the top 8 of conferences. Being hypothetical, how well would Houston or Boise be for that fact, if they played in the big 10, SEC, Big 12, or some other strong conference? I don’t see them running the schedule in any of those conferences.
    UGA is the SEC East champs, but I don’t think you will see any UGA fan that thinks we can flat out whup up on LSU. UGA has the ability to play them tough, but I think they are just too experienced to beat them. They always say though, “On Any Given Saturday”, so nothing is 100%.
    I am for a 8 game playoff, with the 8 conferences that are really relevant in college football, playing in it, and letting it be decided that way. Maybe the top 6 conference champs and 2 at large from the other conference champs, but I suspect, some team or another would always feel cheated or left out. No system, short of a gigantic play off system will satisfy every body and then I suspect, there would still be some that felt they were cheated.

  14. Deb says: Nov 29, 2011 2:49 PM

    @pricecube …

    Someone explained the other day that it would still likely be LSU/Alabama in the title game, but that Georgia would get the Sugar Bowl. I guess there’s some kind of exception to the two-team/conference limit.

    @woebegong …

    I strongly favor a playoff, but not involving solely the winner of the 8 major conferences. That’s just going to put us back in the situation of teams from strong conferences blowing out teams from weaker conferences. Others have suggested a playoff of the top 8, 12, or 16 teams by rank–regardless of conference. I think that would make for a better tournament.

  15. woebegong says: Nov 29, 2011 3:04 PM

    Sure the conference playoffs could include all conferences in the NCAA, but at some point, you have to prevent saturation of the games. Give you a for instance or better even, a comparison of what might happen, if every conference participates. Remember the big East and Conn. last year in a BCS bowl game. They ended up losing money for their university because not enough of their fans wanted to travel down South last year, and watch them get crushed. Was that even a game that a lot of folks watched from start to finish on national TV. On the reverse side, you do have a point in expanding the play offs to include all conferences , because given what kind of team Conn. was, they most likely would never have made it to a BCS bowl, unless they were playing equally weak conferences champs in other second tier conferences. Irrespective of how many conferences played, I believe it will still be a better idea than the BCS Polls are right now. The BCS poll could be better if, the human polls were not factored in, because in almost all of the cases when you let humans decide a favorite, there will be some favoritism shown to a certain team, conference or just personal preferences. Anything that can eliminate any input from ESPN would also improve the BCS. In the end though, a play off system would probably in some shape or another, be preferable to the BCS system. The problem is getting the majority of schools to vote for it and forcing the NCAA’s hand on the subject. As long as money is the big factor, don’t expect it in the near future. I am almost 63, and I will be lucky to see it in my lifetime I believe.

  16. Deb says: Nov 29, 2011 3:19 PM

    @woebegong …

    I like the idea of getting rid of the human element. And I agree … the money will dictate what happens :)

  17. clonefan says: Nov 29, 2011 3:20 PM

    @woebegong: I agree it is all about the money, but the bowls are concerned about the money too. Someone put forth a proposal that used some of the current bowls that looked good on the surface.

    But when the Insight bowl has to take a quarter final game that may not get a very good crowd as compared the possibility of say Texas A&M Vs Nebraska this year. I think the Phoenix area will take the crowd from the lesser game every time. There will be more people staying longer spending more money.

    And while I admit that there is definite appeal in a play off, I am one who doesn’t want to give up the current situation. Tweak it maybe…. But I love the debates (hopefully not too heated). I love watching ALL the bowl games.

    I love letting some of the “lesser” schools get their chance to shine and maybe pull off an up set. I also like to see those players get a reward for all of their hard work.

    I ask you this. Lets assume there was a play off and LSU got upset in the first round. Would any of you rabid LSU fans believe that LSU wasn’t the best team in the nation? So, did we settle anything? Oh and I don’t blame you….

    You’ve already said that the SEC championship game means nothing….

  18. bikerhal says: Nov 29, 2011 3:43 PM


    In that secnario where LSU loses in the first round us fans would have to accept that we are not the best team in the nation. It is what it is. if we don’t take care of business then we can’t think we are the nation’s best. The only sure way would be to play “Best 2 out of 3 ” scenario, as they do in the baseball and basketball.

  19. pricecube says: Nov 29, 2011 3:43 PM


    Georgia may have gotten better over the course of the season but I would not have known it watching them play a terrible Kentucky team a week and a half ago. The entire SEC east is the worst I have ever seen. Georgia barely eeked out wins against Vanderbilt and a weak Florida team. They looked impressive against Auburn … but Auburn needed a miracle to beat Utah State in their season opener. They are awful this year. In fact I would argue the SEC as a whole is the worst I have ever seen in terms of conference strength top to bottom. It is more top heavy this year than ever before. There are three very good teams, Arkansas, Alabama and LSU… the rest of the conference goes from mediocre to downright awful. I can never remember a year before in which Tennessee, Florida and Auburn… traditionally SEC powerhouses… all looked so bad and other schools like Ole Miss or Kentucky, who occasionally put together a formidable team… were awful as well.

    If you argue that Georgia has gotten better over the course of the season I would make the same contention regarding TCU. You are correct that they were not ranked when they defeated Boise State but it is incorrect to simply say they are not ranked… They currently reside at #17 and are certain to move up before bowl season.

    I don’t know if you watched the Boise State UGA game. I did. I was looking forward to it months in advance as one of the most compelling match ups of the year. It was not as close as the score would indicate. Boise State dominated the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball and was in control of the game from start to finish.

    I just really want a playoff… yeah certainly someone will still feel cheated… but it is harder to have sympathy for a 2-3 loss team than it is for me to feel for an undefeated school like Houston, a team like Boise or Oklahoma State… If Georgia defeats LSU then I see Boise State as having a legit argument. If Oklahoma State beats OU then they have one as well. Houston obviously has a pretty simple argument no matter how little respect anyone has for their schedule. I just really want an eight or sixteen team playoff.

    It certainly will make the regular season less interesting though.

  20. woebegong says: Nov 29, 2011 3:43 PM


    Let me clarify a few things, You gotta forgive me, physics was my career, never journalism, LOL.

    I am speaking mainly about BCS bowl games, The bowl situation has gotten out of hand the last few years. I don’t see any purpose for about half of them.

    Now, the BCS has rendered the SEC game almost worthless as far as determining any final standing go, as far as the BCS NC is concerned. However, don’t think for you second that to SEC fans, it is insignificant. I am a big DAWG fan and as proud as a peach to have my team in it. It gives you bragging rights for 365 years down here, and that’s important when you consider that folks down south have kids, that usually, for the first time they speak, it is usually, something like, “Sic em DAWGS, Roll Tide, or something else to do with the parents favorite team. The folks down here are just passionate about football.
    And I do know that the BCS system, since it would be just cold hard facts and statistics, could work, if the human element were not there. Of course, as I learned, statistical analysis can also be manipulated to some degree to make or break a point, but it would be hard to use it wrongly, when the results are already know at that point.
    All I can really do though, as so many fans in my case do, is voice our opinions, debate each other and gripe. The NCAA God,s will make any changes they see fit, and the average fan is left to think, “What If”. I still enjoy the college game though, so I will still watch and debate “What IF’s”, until they put my butt in the ground. Not to disappoint any folks here either, but I am still in half decent health and shape, and I figure to be around a while, LOL. If I didn’t get my butt killed in Viet Nam, and in my military career, the good lord must want me around for something. I am kind of hoping it is to make me a millionaire, but not hoping a lot.

  21. thecrazyasianinseccountry says: Nov 29, 2011 3:47 PM

    This is how NFL RBs should look like …they should all look like a Ware, brand new, expensive Ford, that can be driven from pole to pole by great leaders such as Lee or Jefferson, over hundreds and thousands of Miles, with a nice glass of Chavis in hand, running smooth as if it is coasting down a deep Hilli -ard effortlessly, and to Mingo with whomever helped them kicked-off their Wings and to never forget the good Shepard and great Neighbors, that led them to the endzone.

  22. Deb says: Nov 29, 2011 3:57 PM

    @bikerhal …

    ROFL … best 2 of 3? Don’t even say that around all these crazy LSU and Tide fans ;)

  23. clonefan says: Nov 29, 2011 4:02 PM


    I think I like your style… I am an Engineer… So English is my second language, Math and Science are my first. I guess that makes English my third…

    I understand the South a little, just show up for an Iowa Vs Iowa State game… I now live in MN, so I don’t have to listen to crazed Hawk fans. The only Hawk fans I know are sane and I have learned to tolerate the Hawks.

    I won’t go any farther on the Dawgs, because we might have a few disagreements there, but we will both be cheering for them this weekend. Great tradition with UGA.

    One last comment. I think I owe you a debt of gratitude for your service to our great country. Thank you very much… Maybe you’ll make that million and if I every disagree with you it is not to offend, just all in good clean fun…

    Aint college football great!!!!

  24. woebegong says: Nov 29, 2011 4:03 PM


    You will not find me debating that the SEC East is not the weak sister in the game. I agree 100% but one fact, I would point out in the Kentucky game was the fact that UGA did not have their number 1,2 or 3 RB’s in rotation for the game. They still won, thanks to the defense mostly. Now when they were runner healthy, they dismantled Auburn, 45-7, and Auburn still managed to win 7 games. They also beat S.C.,but S.C. fans credit that to S.C.’s injuries.
    As for the Boise State game. UGA put on the field that night, 15 players, playing their first college game. UGA has steadily improved, and In my perfect world, UGA would somehow, manage to beat LSU, Go to the Sugar Bowl, and have Boise as the opponent. I think then we would have a fair evaluation of how much UGA has or has not improved. I think there is about as much of a chance of that happening right now, as me converting to Islam, LOL. One can only dream though. Miracles do happen though, as I thought after my wife died a while back, I was doomed to be an old single guy, and my present wife came along and cured that. Life takes funny turns sometimes.

  25. woebegong says: Nov 29, 2011 4:21 PM


    Thanks for the kudos. Don’t worry, I am not really offended by most anything anybody says in disagreement with what I say or think about my opinions about UGA, the SEC or anything. If everybody agreed with everybody else, this world would be darn boring. Not to mention, I would not have had a career in the military. It’s all fun, as long as people each respect the other persons right to have an opinion and don’t resort to name calling and childish remarks. I never knew my real father, but the one that raised me, taught me to try and always respect everyone I meet in life and I try pretty hard to do it. I am a real believer in that old saying about, “walk a mile in that persons moccasins”.
    I visited Minn. one time, on my way to go to Australia on a scientific assignment, and it is a pretty state. I gotta say though, I am a wimp when it comes to cold weather so I would not survive a winter there, LOL.

  26. steveintennessee says: Nov 29, 2011 7:16 PM

    Mike Gundy just got a new fan from an SEC man. He showed serious class. Something we all who post here could use more of. Stands and gives him an ovation

  27. steveintennessee says: Nov 29, 2011 7:19 PM

    as to USC and if there were a playoff they would beat everyone. Remebers there was kinda one they were in ……and a fellow named Young schooled them.

  28. steveintennessee says: Nov 29, 2011 7:50 PM

    and…OMT. If memory serves me well a fellow from USC that same year was awrded the Hiesman but had to give it back …as Mr. Young continues to be ignored…..who finsished second but if the guy that got it lost it…well you figure out the rest. By the logic used here since USC lost to Stanford not only should Bama not play LSU nor should USC… should be Stanford. But this forum is never about logic its about bias( and i to am guilty of it). Logic is only as good as the rules its based on and the rules are a bit out of orbit on this subject. We all know the NFL,MLB, NBA winners are often not the best team but the won who wins the last game that counts.

  29. chachooga says: Nov 29, 2011 8:11 PM

    if Vtech and OSU win this weekend they deserve to be above Bama.

    Do any of you know Bama’s out of conference schedule??? I’ve heard other teams knocked on national television for scheduling weak teams….well, have you taken a look at overbloated, missed 4 FGs Bama???

    -Kent State
    -Penn State
    -North Texas
    -Georgia Southern

    Can’t argue with crap like that. just sayin.

  30. steelerchicken says: Nov 29, 2011 8:22 PM

    The two best teams are LSU/Alabama!

    Your team lost to Iowa St! Can anyone name a player on the Cyclones? The only reason I know Iowa States coach is because he was defensive coordinator at Pitt.

  31. steelerchicken says: Nov 29, 2011 8:30 PM


    Oklahoma States non conference

    Louisiana, Arizona, Tulsa and Kansas in conference

    Va Tech
    Appalachian St, east Carolina, Arkansas St and Marshall


    Duke, San Jose state, Notre dame

    Alabama does not look bad now!

  32. twoody50 says: Nov 29, 2011 9:12 PM

    Oklahoma States loss to Iowa St only proves one thing that is certain in college football, anyone can be beaten on any given day. All you folks boast that LSU and Bama can beat anyone in the country. How do you know? I love college football but it lends itself to the subjectivity of the talking heads…..sports talk show jocks and the media. Namely ESPN. Nothing will be proven until a playoff happens in college football. Subjectivity rules.

  33. twoody50 says: Nov 29, 2011 9:18 PM

    Nobody wants to look at the facts. ESPN and the BCS only talk about strength of schedule when it is in the SECs favor. Alabama’s strength of schedule was 23 in the country, Oklahoma’s was 8th. True, Oklahoma St lost to Iowa St and Alabama lost to LSU, but, Alabama didn’t play Iowa St and Oklahoma St didn’t play LSU.

  34. twoody50 says: Nov 29, 2011 9:19 PM

    You don’t hear Sabin saying LSU is a better team. He must not be a classy guy.

  35. boomerdt says: Nov 29, 2011 9:25 PM

    @deb: With OU losing Broyles we don’t have much experience at WR. Don’t get me wrong, the team will show up and play. If OU can get pressure on the WV and keep the osu wr’s under control then OU has a great chance. I don’t have much faith in the OU secondary. We don’t defend the intermediate or the long bomb well. We haven’t for the past few years. But who knows…. We shall find out saturday.

  36. Deb says: Nov 29, 2011 10:17 PM

    @boomerdt …

    I don’t watch NCAA as religiously as the NFL. Can’t remember the opponent, but checked out the Sooners early when they held the top ranking. They looked pretty big and bad that night :)

  37. buckeyewareagle says: Nov 29, 2011 11:00 PM

    The two best football teams in the country should be playing in the BCS nat. champ game, no matter who they end of being. Mark Richt was sitting in the hot seat for most of the season with the UGA just looking for an excuse to can him. Now, since SC had to kick their QB out of school and a devastating injury to Marcus Lattimore, GA is headed to the SEC title game, almost by default. SEC eastern division has looked pretty poor this season. By the middle of next season Richt may find himself in the same position. Let’s all just hope that none of the SEC HCs, offense/defense coordinators, or coaching staff in general even gives a passing thought to that team in PA. What a mistake that would be. Hoping there is still some loyalty in coaching in the NCAA and that by the end of bowl season there are going to be a lot of contracts broken. For know Urban Meyer is the man, and he looks pretty darn happy about it. And, don’t forget Auburn. They returned 5 starters this season and are in the middle of a huge rebuilding year. Look out LSU and Bama, Auburn will be back.

  38. steveintennessee says: Nov 29, 2011 11:01 PM

    Saban showed class by not running his mouth…he leave things for the field. Unlike twoody who does’nt…most of your post are baseless

  39. infrno says: Nov 29, 2011 11:39 PM

    Well, if Saban left things for the field, he wouldn’t be politicking for another shot, given that it’s already been determined [i]on the field[/i] that LSU is better than Alabama.

  40. mclayton31 says: Nov 30, 2011 4:56 AM

    I’ve heard guys talk about smaller conference teams don’t fair well against the big guys but we’ve had our fair share of upsets in bowl games the past few years. Just because you play in bigger conferences does not guarantee a blow out or even a win.

  41. Deb says: Nov 30, 2011 12:09 PM

    What on earth is a buckeyewareagle?

  42. Deb says: Nov 30, 2011 12:14 PM

    Saban hasn’t politicked for anything … unlike the fans politicking to play the easiest opponent between them and the crystal :D His only statement has been that it should be the top two teams … as it is every year.

  43. chachooga says: Nov 30, 2011 3:37 PM


    what? No that makes Bama look worse. You can’t list an in conference team against OSU….come one dude.

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