After a week’s worth of speculation, and, coincidentally enough, all the big-time vacancies filled again, you can apparently stop dialing the coaching digits associated with Mike Gundy.
Amidst rumors that had connected the current Oklahoma State head coach with future employment opportunities, both Gundy and his employer have remained largely — and eerily — silent. The only real sound out of Stillwater this week as the speculation ebbed and flowed? A radio personality who co-authored a book with Gundy stating that the coach “is staying at Oklahoma State” and won’t “pursue any other opportunities and decided to stay.”
Thursday evening, the silence was broken in a way positive for those who would like to see Gundy’s employment at the school to continue.
While acknowledging that other schools had indeed sniffed around his coaching vicinity, Gundy, per Chuck Carlton of the Dallas Morning News, stated that he will “absolutely” return as the Cowboys’ head coach in 2013. “[N]o question, no question,” Gundy added when asked about remaining at OSU next season.
And for rumors that had him all but hired at Arkansas, or any other conversations with various programs that have been tossed around?
“The only thing I’m going to say is they haven’t gone as deep as what people say,” Gundy said.
Gundy made his comments at a media gathering for the Cowboys’ appearance in the Heart of Dallas Bowl.
Even as there still may be issues in the head coach/athletic director relationship — “it’s a lot better than what people say” — it appears that Gundy and the OSU athletic department have decided to reach a peace accord. At least as far as 2013 is concerned.
Navy has seen one of its most productive players on the defensive side of the ball play for perhaps the final time this season.
Kwazel Bertrand sustained a broken ankle in the win over Air Force last Saturday, head coach Ken Niumatalolo confirmed earlier this week. As a result, the defensive back will very likely miss the remainder of the 2015 season.
And, because he is a senior and has no other eligibility avenues to pursue, it would effectively end his collegiate career as well.
“I feel terrible for Kwazel. It’s really unfortunate any time a senior goes down with a season-ending injury,” Niumatalolo said. “Kwazel has been a really good player for us and we’re going to miss his presence out on the field.”
Bertrand started 27 games over the past three-plus seasons, including all four in 2015.
You know how I know we’re gradually creeping up on the end of another regular season? Watch lists are being whittled.
The first major honor to do so is the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, which is given out annually to the best quarterback who is a college senior or fourth-year junior. The preseason watch list was 30 quarterbacks strong; the newest list has been cut in half to 15.
The most recent list includes one of the top Heisman contenders (TCU’s Trevone Boykin) and the top two nationally in passing yards (Bowling Green’s Matt Johnson, Western Kentucky’s Brandon Doughty), as well as a quarterback who’s closing in on the all-time FBS record for rushing touchdowns (Navy’s Keenan Reynolds).
The Pac-12 leads all conferences with three watch listers, followed by two each from the AAC, ACC and Big Ten. The SEC has as many players (one, Mississippi State’s Dak Prescott) as the FCS (North Dakota State’s Carson Wentz).
Last year’s winner was Marcus Mariota of Oregon.
Trevone Boykin, TCU
Jacoby Brissett, NC State
Connor Cook, Michigan State
Brandon Doughty, WKU
Everett Golson, Florida State
Kevin Hogan, Stanford
Matt Johnson, Bowling Green
Cody Kessler, USC
Paxton Lynch, Memphis
Dak Prescott, Mississippi State
Keenan Reynolds, Navy
Nate Sudfeld, Indiana
Carson Wentz, N. Dakota State
Marquise Williams, North Carolina
Travis Wilson, Utah