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Mike Gundy releases video statement about Sports Illustrated series

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Sports Illustrated announced on Monday that it was publishing a five-part series on the Oklahoma State football program called “The Dirty Game”, starting at 9 a.m. ET on Tuesday.

The series is the result of a comprehensive 10-month investigation into the Oklahoma State University football program. It includes independent and on-the-record interviews with more than 60 former OSU football players who played from 2001 to ’10, as well as current and former OSU football staffers.

Cowboys coach Mike Gundy addressed the matter in this video statement on Monday:

“I’m very proud of what we’ve accomplished here, both on and off the field,” said Gundy. “Our goal has always been to take young people from where their parents have gotten them and to make them better over a four or five year period. We’re very proud of that in many ways. So, until further time — and obviously the university will make that decision — there’s not any comment that we would have on the Sports Illustrated article.”

The series will run as follows starting Tuesday:

•    Part 1: Money: SI finds that OSU used a bonus system orchestrated by an assistant coach whereby players were paid for their performance on the field, with some stars collecting $500 or more per game. In addition, the report finds that OSU boosters and at least two assistant coaches funneled money to players via direct payments and a system of no-show and sham jobs. Some players say they collected more than $10,000 annually in under-the-table payouts.

•    Part 2: Academics: Widespread academic misconduct, which included tutors and other OSU personnel completing coursework for players, and professors giving passing grades for little or no work, all in the interest of keeping top players eligible.

•    Part 3: Drugs: OSU tolerated and at times enabled recreational drug use, primarily through a specious counseling program that allowed some players to continue to use drugs while avoiding penalties. The school’s drug policy was selectively enforced, with some stars going unpunished despite repeated positive tests.

•    Part 4: Sex: OSU’s hostess program, Orange Pride, figured so prominently in the recruitment of prospects that the group more than tripled in size under Miles. Both Miles and Gundy took the unusual step of personally interviewing candidates. Multiple former players and Orange Pride members say that a small subset of the group had sex with recruits, a violation of NCAA rules.

•    Part 5: The Fallout: SI finds that many players who were no longer useful to the football program were cast aside, returning to worlds they had hoped to escape. Some have been incarcerated, others live on the streets, many have battled drug abuse and a few have attempted suicide.

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20 Responses to “Mike Gundy releases video statement about Sports Illustrated series”
  1. shea801 says: Sep 9, 2013 7:19 PM

    If this happened under Gundy as the head coach, then he deserves to be fired. Even if it started under Miles. He should know better; not just because he’s the head coach, but because he was part of the bullsh*t that almost ended the football program back in the late 80’s were it not for Thurman Thomas donating a shit ton of money to keep it going after they came back from sanctions.

    Also, according to SI 85% of this happened under Miles, which means LSU has GOT to be crapping itself right now. This will be ugly for OSU (and rightfully so), but it could turn into a true nightmare for the LSU. It’ll also put WVU in a bind (albeit not much) since DeForest is currently employed over there.

    I’ve been an OSU homer my whole life, and I can’t stand when stuff like this happens (obviously), but I also know this kind of stuff happens at all major DI schools. It’s just a matter of who talks to whom, and how well things can be kept hidden. Schools like OSU don’t just come from the dregs to become top tier without impropriety. It’s just the nature of the beast. Still stings when your school gets caught 😦

  2. farvite says: Sep 9, 2013 7:46 PM

    While I understand this is cheating on multiple levels according to the current system, I continue to think the problem here is the NCAA

    This is a football business. Academics? My @$$!! Over half the kids in these schools won’t graduate. Sex?? Duh! What do you think goes on at these campuses??.. And are the females complaining? Were they forced? C’mon… $$$ changing hands?? Wow, imagine that. Surely it’s never happened before?!

    Just go away NCAA and let ‘college’ football operate as the business it really is.

  3. bmmayhew says: Sep 9, 2013 8:20 PM

    SI is about 2 years late with this. Deadspin had this in 2011.

  4. seanb20124 says: Sep 9, 2013 8:55 PM

    Part 5 is on the former players. They had an opportunity to get their degree, but blew it.

    My guess however is that most of the players were not academically suited to be at OK St.

  5. gopokes0714 says: Sep 9, 2013 9:14 PM

    Most of it appears to be blown way out of proportion.

    It seems a little unbelievable that all of this involving 100+ players and multiple coaching staffs would take 10 years to discover.

    I personally know current and former players. All of which have never been aware of anything close to resembling these allegations.

    Local radio personality Sam Mayes played under Les Miles, and was an All American also denies these allegations. he even stated that if there was pay to play he would have been the first to raise his hand, but no nothing like that went on.

    The former players on tape appear to be all disgruntled players. and every program has them. It would be one thing if it was one or two allegation, but they claim everything under the sun. It is odd that there are so many allegations to come out all at once.

    for the most part there is some truth to this, like grades and stuff. That is unfortunate, but if you think it doesnt happen at EVERY program you’re kidding yourself.

    Also why not come with the allegations in the summer? Why now, two weeks into the season, especially if no current players or coaches are implicated.

  6. sillec28 says: Sep 9, 2013 9:47 PM

    I’m really surprised that a small subset of Orange Pride women had sex with recruits. I would have thought they all did.

  7. chitownjeff says: Sep 9, 2013 9:56 PM

    gopokes0714 says:
    Sep 9, 2013 9:14 PM

    So gopokes.. a former player. alumnus of the school… who’s currently employed in a profession that relies on the success of the athletic program is denying allegations which could cripple the program and also hurt him professionally?

  8. malkinrulez says: Sep 9, 2013 9:59 PM

    Yawn, I’m shocked misconduct involving a major football program? What’s next someone will report the sky is blue?

  9. kcrobert10 says: Sep 9, 2013 10:07 PM

    True or not I have no idea. That’s for the ncaa to decide. I will say this if ok st or Lsu decides to preemptively run off there coach I sincerely hope Missouri will be willing to grab one of them up. Pinkle is a great man even won lots of games at mizzou but lets face facts he has been at the helm for 13 yrs with no conference championships or bcs games. Its time to move on and miles or Gundy would be great in Columbia and I’m sorry I’m not going to act holier than thou cause ill bet good money a lot of this stuff happens and will continue to happen all over college football.

  10. dmcgrann says: Sep 9, 2013 10:41 PM

    No surprise here. Dexter Manley claimed he was functionally illiterate after he “graduated” from OSU in the early ’80’s.

  11. thefiesty1 says: Sep 9, 2013 11:11 PM

    If this was really going on, it didn’t seem to help them. They improved over the years since Miles but nothing earth shattering.

  12. brewcrewfan54 says: Sep 9, 2013 11:26 PM

    Nothing earth shattering? They lost 1 game a f couple years ago that almost certainly would have put them in the National Championship game. And that particular game was played right after several members of their school died in a plane crash so I doubt they were really as well prepared for that game as normal that season. So I’ll say they’ve been a little better than that.

  13. steventimm says: Sep 10, 2013 1:29 AM

    Why now? And I’m surprised T Boone wasn’t able to spend this into oblivion!

  14. txnative61 says: Sep 10, 2013 1:38 AM

    Anyone who has been to Stillwater would be inclined to wonder how they persuade young men from other area’s to choose to play there. Of course it starts with the enormous donations of T Boone Pickens to build state of the art athletic facilities. And of course coeds having sex with athletes in this day and age is just pervasive, BYU and a few others notwithstanding. On the other items, I think players can find what they are looking for—-and talk about it only after realizing their mistake. My guess is some variation could be found at many schools under intense scrutiny such a this, but opening that can of worms would disrupt the status quo.

  15. dcroz says: Sep 10, 2013 8:06 AM

    While the allegations are damning, I’m have a hard time buying that something of the magnitude SI is alleging could have went on without someone saying something long before now. I’m not saying that OSU has done nothing wrong–and I agree with the statement others have made that some degree of wrongdoing goes on at every program–but as someone who has seen up close how the media can blow something way out of proportion or even make stuff up just to generate ratings/hits/sales, I am always skeptical whenever I see something as “earth-shattering” as this reported.

    Oh, and brewcrewfan54: the “we lost to a 6-6 Iowa State team because we were grieving” excuse is laughable. Despite the BS the AD put out about how “close-knit” the OSU community is, I think it’s safe to say 90% of the players didn’t even know who the women’s basketball coach was, let alone had any kind of a relationship that would cause that kind of distraction. And was it before or after the Cowboys blew a 24-7 third quarter lead that their hearts just went out of the game? They just need to admit what everyone else already knows: they choked under the pressure. It happens.

  16. mogogo1 says: Sep 10, 2013 9:59 AM

    “It seems a little unbelievable that all of this involving 100+ players and multiple coaching staffs would take 10 years to discover.”

    Who was going to report it? Would you want to be the person known for ratting out the program and getting them put on probation? Would that make you popular at the parties and help you land a job from alumni? The guys cast aside would be the only ones who might want to raise a stink, but they’re stuck in the hood with few contacts, little proof, and limited credibility. Even if they tried to get the press involved, odds are there’s not enough proof to run a story, especially anywhere in OSU land.

  17. padraighansen says: Sep 10, 2013 10:18 AM

    Probably some truth in all of this. Usually, the truth is somewhere in the middle. The problem for SI is this: Thayer Evans has a horrendous journalistic reputation, including being terminated for falsifying his work, and is known, documented, and on-the-record hater of Oklahoma State. Second, most – if not all – of the players interviewed were dismissed from the team.

    Those two factors alone give me considerable pause when reading this story.

  18. crazycane says: Sep 10, 2013 1:38 PM

    crazycane says: Sep 10, 2013 11:48 AM

    As a die hard Canes fan I can relate to all the questions OkSU fans are asking and can say with 100% certainty that the NCAA doesn’t care about statutes, doesn’t care about facts, doesn’t care about the truth. They will make their own truth on everything and will resort to illegal ways of finding it.

    Good luck, you will need it.

  19. surly1n1nd1anapol1s says: Sep 10, 2013 8:04 PM

    No wonder Miles has done well at LSU; a perfect cultural fit. And I’m guessing Gundy had his own taste of Orange Pride. At that time he was a man and younger than 40.

  20. Hawk Rising says: Sep 11, 2013 1:23 AM

    Man, I should have went to college instead of joining the Navy…

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