Mike Gundy made a bold — and strong — move with Dana Holgorsen

Oklahoma State coach calls his decision to hire Holgorsen 'one of the best coaching moves in the country'
by John Helsley Published: July 9, 2012
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photo - OSU: Oklahoma State University offensive coordinator Dana Holgorsen, left, and head coach Mike Gundy argue with referees over a call during an NCAA college football game against Baylor, Saturday, Nov. 6, 2010, in Stillwater, Okla. (AP Photo/The News Press, Chelcey Adami) ORG XMIT: OKSTI201
OSU: Oklahoma State University offensive coordinator Dana Holgorsen, left, and head coach Mike Gundy argue with referees over a call during an NCAA college football game against Baylor, Saturday, Nov. 6, 2010, in Stillwater, Okla. (AP Photo/The News Press, Chelcey Adami) ORG XMIT: OKSTI201

Mike Gundy's rise among the nation's top coaches — and that's a tag backed up by the numbers, most notably a stair-stepping annual win tally — in hindsight features many interesting moves and decisions.

From his strict stance on discipline, which began with a program cleansing in his first year; to a shift in offensive philosophy; to his theory that better beds and better meals brings better players; to his recent move toward shorter and softer practices; Gundy has thought and operated outside the box.

And the results could hardly be better.

Yet for Gundy, of all his edgy approaches, one in particular stands out.

“When I look back at decisions that I've made, and there were some that were wrong, but one of the best coaching moves in the country was to hire Dana Holgorsen,” Gundy said of the spread-offense renegade. “And the reason why is Brandon Weeden couldn't run, which is the system we had before. So we took a chance.”

Again, Gundy rolled the dice and came up 7s.

Holgorsen was always a Stillwater short-timer, bent on climbing to a head coaching gig. And he never hid those desires, bunking in a local hotel rather than wasting time or money in a home.

Still, Holgorsen's imprint on the program remains.

The Cowboys stand committed to his version of the spread, evident in a full-bore recruiting pursuit of wideouts and quick-trigger quarterbacks.

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by John Helsley
OSU Reporter Sr.
John Helsley grew up in Del City, reading all the newspapers and sports magazines he could get his hands on. And Saturday afternoons, when the Major League Game of the Week was on, he'd keep a scorecard for the game. So the sports appeal was was...
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