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OSU football: Each case of player discipline is unique

Looking back at Mike Gundy's track record of players who have left the program.
By Gina Mizell Published: June 2, 2012

— Running back Herschel Sims was dismissed from the Oklahoma State football program Friday for violation of team rules.

Steve Warren, Sims' coach at Abilene (Texas) High School, told the Tulsa World that the dismissal stems from a miscommunication about money between Sims and teammate Jeremiah Tshimanga. Tshimanga filed an incident report with the OSU police department on May 18 claiming that his bank account was accessed without his consent and that $700 was stolen.

Of course, each case that causes player discipline is unique. Thus, coach Mike Gundy's actions in those types of situations have varied over his seven-plus years as head coach.

Gundy suspended nine players in his first season, which clearly played a part in the Cowboys' disappointing 4-7 campaign in 2005.

Yet Gundy welcomed Chris Collins into the program when he was under indictment on charges of aggravated sexual assault of a child, then dismissed him when he pleaded guilty in 2007.

Gundy also allowed Jeremy Nethon to return to the team as a walk-on after he was dismissed in 2005. Nethon responded after a redshirt season by earning his scholarship back and being named the Independence Bowl's Defensive MVP.

And Gundy did not dismiss Jamie Blatnick when he pleaded guilty to misdemeanor assault and battery for striking former teammate Steve Denning in the face with a beer bottle, or Bo Bowling when he pleaded guilty to misdemeanor drug charges. Blatnick climbed the Empire State Building, via a StairMaster, as punishment for a summer and later became an All-Big 12 defensive end in 2011. Bowling was suspended for 2009 but returned as a non-scholarship player and developed into a productive inside receiver.

Here's a look back at key players Gundy has dismissed during his tenure as OSU's head coach, and how those losses impacted the Cowboys.


Jeremy Nethon, linebacker

Nethon was dismissed for academic reasons but was given a second chance as a non-scholarship player. After redshirting the 2005 season, he compiled 96 tackles over the next two seasons, including 11 in his Defensive MVP performance in the 2006 Independence Bowl.

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