Gundy defends tirade

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Mike Gundy was in no mood to back down from comments he made during his 3 1/2-minute tirade in the post-game press conference following Oklahoma State’s 49-45 win over Texas Tech on Saturday.

He didn’t want to make any apologies, and he didn’t care to retract anything either. He said he was only doing what he thought was right.

Gundy, however, did have just one regret.

“Wish I would have said more,” he said.

During the Big 12 Conference’s weekly teleconference Monday, Gundy re-emphasized his belief that student-athletes should be off limits when it comes to issues off the field.

That, he said, is why he took exception to a column written by the Oklahoman’s Jenni Carlson, who questioned the character and toughness of Cowboys quarterback Bobby Reid in a story that ran Saturday.

The column, which the Oklahoman has stood behind, was the subject of Gundy’s post-game rant.

“(I’m) tired of certain people downgrading college athletes who are good people,” Gundy said. “If you want to comment on his play, comment on his play. But don’t comment on something that’s outside of his play that is downgrading or belittling to a young man who is trying to do things right.”

Reid, the team’s starting quarterback at the beginning of the season, was benched prior to Oklahoma State’s game against Troy on Sept. 14. He did not play on Saturday against Texas Tech and is expected to remain in the backup role when his team plays Sam Houston State this weekend.

In her column, Carlson questioned whether or not Reid would be willing to put forth the effort in trying to regain his starting spot.

“Does he have the fire in his belly?” she wrote.

Though Gundy did not get into the specifics of the column, which he claimed was three-fourths untrue, he did say he’s fed up with the way the media treat student-athletes.

Other coaches seem to agree with his sentiments. Gundy said he has received several supportive e-mails since the incident.

“I’ve been bombed with them,” Gundy said.

Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops defended Gundy during Monday’s teleconference, and said he agreed with the coach’s assessment of the media.

“The problem with us is these are – regardless of what anyone wants to say – student athletes,” Stoops said. “They’re not professional players. They’re just playing for their school, trying to do a good job.”

Gundy did not answer any questions regarding the game in his post-game press conference. He said defending Reid was a higher priority.

“I thought it was more important that somebody stand up for the player who couldn’t stand up for himself,” Gundy said.

K-State linebacker Reggie Walker, who did not see the highlights of Gundy’s post-game press conference, said he couldn’t envision seeing coach Ron Prince pull off a similar stunt.

Still, he said he understood why Gundy did what he did, though he felt it could have been done in a different way.

“It was good that he stood up for his players, because a player wants to be respected by his coach,” Walker said. “But I think he could have calmed down.”

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