Sunday Rewind: Mike Gundy Q&A

The Sunday teleconference with Oklahoma State head coach Mike Gundy was a little more brief following the 41-39 homecoming victory over Kansas State Saturday night that keeps the Cowboys in a three-way tie at the top of the Big 12 South division standings at 3-1 and an overall record of 5-3. The Cowboys have an open week before hosting Texas on Nov. 3 at Boone Pickens Stadium.

Q: The open week comes at a good time for your team, right?
Gundy: Yes, it does come at a good time. We've been going at it hard for 10 to 11 straight weeks and we can go back and work on the fundamentals of football and take some time off to allow guys to heal up. We will practice on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday and give them the other days off.

Q: Will you take the opportunity to get an early jump on preparing for Texas?
Gundy: We'll get to Texas in the middle of the week.

Q: Your coaching staff will be on the road recruiting some this week, but this is also a good time for them to decompress a little, maybe see their families?
Gundy: Yeah, they'll be working 7 (a.m.) to 7 (p.m.) this week, so they'll get some time off to see their families. We will be out recruiting some this week, but all the coaches will be at practice (Monday, Wednesday and Thursday).

Q: Do you feel your team has made some strides, including last night, in the competition area? That was a hard fought win against a really good team.
Gundy: They've come a long ways, but as I've told you all along, this is a really close group with good senior leadership. I thought the defense showed something last night. We had guys coming off (hurt) and we were having to play some down the line guys and they found ways to get turnovers and get the ball for the offense.

Q: You're playmakers really come through for you, don't they?
Gundy: (Brandon) Pettigrew made a big play. (Adarius) Bowman, (Dantrell) Savage, (Zac) Robinson, and (Kendall) Hunter all make plays when they get their hands on the ball, but last night special teams made plays with Perrish Cox on the kickoff return, Tommy D. on that last return when we needed it. The kicking game as a whole. At the end the snap, the hold, and the kick and that was made under pressure. That's what happens when guys work hard and prepare well. They get the job done.

Q: You used Dan Bailey on kickoffs last night instead of Matt Fodge, why?
Gundy: We felt Dan was pushing the ball deeper and that is why we used him last night. Fodge has had some fatigue and Dan had practiced well enough the past couple of weeks and he did a good job. We were much improved overall in that area with coverage. The punt return they broke came on a terrible punt that was short.

Q: What can you tell us about the injuries, especially at linebacker?
Gundy: I haven't seen anybody yet. With this being an open week I don't think those guys are going to be around today. I don't know, but I know in this game you have to play with the guys that can be out there and if that is (Justin) Gent and Orie Lemon then we will get them ready to play. That is what you have to do.

Q: The rushing game was again over 300 yards. How did that look on tape?
Gundy: The blocking was average. It was guys making plays with the ball in their hands. We have to get better in that area and that is something we'll work on this week.

Q: Was it more the Kansas State players or having to face a 3-4 defense that you hadn't seen that made for the problems blocking?
Gundy: It was their players. I told you all week that they are really good, well coached, and run to the football hard. They have seven seniors, three juniors and a sophomore on that defense. They have corners that can cover and linemen that can rush the passer and put pressure on him. They pressured Zac all night long and that is why he had trouble throwing the ball, but he did rush for over 100 yards.

Q: You do know where your team is sitting in the Big 12, right?
Gundy: I didn't look at much. I know KU won and they are playing good. I know OU won, Texas won and we play them next and they are a good team. I know Missouri won and Texas A&M won. I know all that.

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