“I was a voter on a coach of the year ballot, and I voted for coach Pinkel for coach of the year. I’m not sure which one it was, but I thought he was very deserving of the award,” Gundy said.
In its three previous trips to the Cotton Bowl, OSU scored a win over TCU in 1945 and sustained a pair of losses to Mississippi in 2004 and 2010, respectively. OSU’s 1945 trip was the school’s first-ever bowl appearance and it produced a 34-0 victory. In 2004, Eli Manning and the Rebels got the best of Josh Fields, Rashaun Woods and the Cowboys. In 2010 — the first Cotton Bowl Classic played in AT&T Stadium — OSU’s defense made a goal-line stand and forced five turnovers, but the Pokes still lost a 21-7 decision to Ole Miss.
Besides being former conference foes, the two teams do share some familiar faces on the coaching staffs.
The Tigers have two OSU alums on staff with offensive coordinator Josh Henson, a 1998 graduate who spent three years on Les Miles’ staff at OSU, and recruiting graduate assistant Cooper Bassett, who was a defensive lineman on last year’s Cowboy squad.
Oklahoma State has a Missouri alum on the coaching staff with receivers coach Jason Ray, who graduated from Missouri in 2007.
“We may have to have Jason and Cooper Bassett make a truce and not give up any information,” Gundy said. “I just thought about Jason Ray when you mentioned that. That may benefit us. That may put us on a level playing field.”
Editor’s Note: Elmquist is the sports editor for the Stillwater NewsPress.