Gundy Says Donovan Woods Gets QB Start

STILLWATER -- "I think we're going to start Donovan and then let Bobby play. We don't know how many reps each player will get, but Donovan has done a good job in the off season," Mike Gundy said. "He's worked extremely hard, and he's a good leader for us. He's an experienced player and we'll let him take the first snap and then obviously with Bobby playing."

With that answer to the first query into the quarterback situation at his first weekly news conference Monday, Oklahoma State's head coach answered the question that the media and fans asking for months.

Donovan Woods will start at quarterback on Saturday against Montana State in the 6 p.m. season opener at Boone Pickens Stadium, but the quarterback competition isn't over. Redshirt freshman and talented challenger Bobby Reid will play in the game. The reaction from the two quarterbacks was quite different. The guy you expected to be elated was calm, and the guy you thought might be disappointed was thrilled.

"It was just, I don't really know how to answer that," Woods said when asked his feelings when he was told he was going to start the game Saturday with the Bobcats.

Did Woods see the starting role as something he won or simply something he held on to?

"It depends on how you look at it," said the sophomore that threw 1,628 yards last season as a freshman. "I haven't looked that in depth into it."

"For me it will be a dream come true," said Reid of when he gets into the game on Saturday. "It's what I've wanted to do. I was expected to play last year and then my shoulder injury kind of stopped that. Whenever I get the call I'm going to do what I can do."

Now the questions go from who will start to how the playing time at quarterback will be divided? That is a work in progress and will probably continue to be devised as the week wears on.

"We've talked about that and it's hard to gauge that," added Gundy. "If I knew I would tell you because I don't think that has a factor with what people do game plan wise. We're not sure when that would happen, but we would like to have that set up prior to (the game)."

The most intriguing question is what Reid will do when he gets in the game. The standout that lost only one game as a starting quarterback in high school at Galena Park North Shore has loads of ability both throwing and running with the football.

"Both are very talented players," said Gundy. "The one thing we don't know about Bobby is what he's going to do on game day. We know he has a lot of physical ability and had a lot of success in high school, and his history shows he's a winner. We know what Donovan can do on game day, he did it last year. Any player that has competed and showed signs of doing things that could help us win deserves to play in the game. The quarterback position just gets a lot more publicity."

One thing the quarterback competition did not do was destroy the camaraderie of the two players and the team as a whole. There is no split. In fact, watching the quarterbacks you would think the situation had been equitably settled for a long time.

"It was pretty laid back out there," said the more reserved Woods.

"Coach (Larry) Fedora tries to take as much stress and pressure off of us as possible," Reid said of the light hearted moments in practice. "When he's up in the box on Saturdays we're going to be the ones on the field coaching. He's trying to get us prepared and comfortable with every situation."

Now all that is left is to see what happens in the game.

"I'm glad the season rolled around," Woods said of the fast approaching opener. "I'm definitely ready to play to see how the offense unfolds and to see what excitement there is for us."

Oddly enough, Reid has already played out the game once or maybe more than that. This year's EA Sports NCAA Football 2006 had him as the OSU starting quarterback and once he got his game he played Montana State first.

"That was the first game I played when I got the game," said Reid, smiling. "We won, like 95-to-3."

That's a result everybody would find suitable on Saturday regardless of how the quarterbacks split time.

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