Bloomington, Ind. – Who had the toughest job in Stillwater, Okla., this fall?
It wasn't Coach Mike Gundy, who had to lead a relatively young and inexperienced team through a rigorous Big 12 schedule that featured four teams that were ranked in the nation's top five at some point this fall.
It wasn't sophomore quarterback Zac Robinson, who took over as the team's starter in week three and went on to amass 3,299 yards of total offense in basically 10 games.
No, the toughest job might have belonged to Kevin Klintworth.
Klintworth is an Associate Athletic Director at Oklahoma State, responsible for the media relations duties of the Cowboy football program. His responsibilities became a whole lot more daunting in late September when Gundy used his Texas Tech postgame press conference to unleash a verbal assault on a local columnist for a story about the team's early-season starting quarterback, Bobby Reid.
Gundy insisted the column was not only inaccurate but unfair, and he thought it included the sort of character assassination that necessitated his September tirade.
Video of the Oklahoma State coach's outburst quickly made the issue national news, forcing Klintworth and his media relations staff to keep tabs on what columnists from around the country were saying about the coach and the program.
"The toughest part was Kevin felt like he was representing Britney Spears for a week," Gundy said Monday afternoon.
Gundy didn't receive any sort of reprimand from either the University or the Big 12 Conference afterwards, and the OSU coach actually drew a great deal of support from college football fans both locally and nationally who overwhelmingly sided with the third-year coach for defending his player.
The issue has disappeared from the national headlines, but it's still the first thing that most football fans outside of Stillwater think about when it comes to the Cowboy program, and it's still one of the most commonly downloaded Youtube videos.
"One of the (local reporters) told me it's up to 1.8 million hits," Gundy said. "I don't know how long it will take to go away. But it hasn't affected anybody or done anything."
The incident was such a big story locally that a Norman, Okla., car dealer, Fowler Honda, even put together a TV ad that was a spoof of Gundy's postgame press conference. In the 30-second clip a Gundy look-alike goes on a rant about another automobile dealer's newspaper ad, which promotes sale prices that don't match up to what Fowler Honda is offering its customers.
While others still talk about the 11-week-old outburst, Gundy says it's behind him, and he's worried about preparing his team for its fifth bowl game in six years.
Gundy did joke, though, that it's too bad he can't get a financial cut from the video's popularity.
"I discussed if I could get a dime for every hit," joked Gundy.
Gundy, Cowboys Have Moved On From Tirade
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