Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy half-joked Monday at Big 12 Media Days that “in life, we don’t always get what we want” when it comes to scheduling, with the Cowboys opening the 2013 season in a marquee game against SEC foe Mississippi State at Reliant Stadium in Houston.
Gundy hasn’t budged on his stance that playing an easy nonconference schedule is the Cowboys’ best way to compete for a national championship. That philosophy caused recent tension with athletic director Mike Holder — and was a primary reason Gundy entertained interest from Tennessee and Arkansas last December.
The difficult opener, Gundy said, will cause the Cowboys to have a more strenuous fall camp.
“My concern is whether that affects us in November,” Gundy said. “Because we really need to be strong in the last week of October and up through November to make that run.
“We’ve had a formula at Oklahoma State over the last really five, six, seven years that we feel like gives us the best chance to be strong, be in great shape, and be fresh at the end of the season so our teams can perform at the highest level. We have to alter that some when we play teams early in the season, particularly the first game, that are very capable of having success against your team if you don’t play well.”