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Oklahoma State Football

Gundy Sees Leipold's Approach with Kansas

October 26, 2021

STILLWATER – From a distance it is very easy to look at this week as Homecoming off the field with all the pomp and circumstance of America’s Greatest Homecoming. Then on the field look at this as a glorified bye week with Kansas coming in for a scrimmage on Saturday night. If you take that approach then you would be following in the footsteps of the first-place team in the Big 12 standings Oklahoma, but the Sooners nearly became the permanent answer to a trivia question of which team in college football was on the losing end of one of college football’s biggest upsets?

By point spread, Stanford’s 24-23 upset of Southern Cal in 2007 may be the biggest as the Trojans were a 41-point favorite. This spread last Saturday in Lawrence was 38-points and the Jayhawks had been outscored by a combined 79-points in their two previous games.

At halftime, Kansas led No. 2-Oklahoma 10-0. In the end a 21-6 rally in the fourth quarter led the Sooners to a 35-23 win despite being outgained 412-yards to 398.  

"They are a physical team. Their quarterback is athletic, and they have a freshman running back that we offered, he's a good player,” Oklahoma State head coach Mike Gundy said of Kansas.  

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Devin Neal celebrates a touchdown against Oklahoma.

That freshman running back is Devin Neal, who scored two touchdowns in the game and rushed for 100-yards on 23 carries, was named the Big 12 Newcomer of the Week after his heroics in the close call with the Sooners. Neal was a standout baseball player as well as football at Free State High School in Lawrence. Oklahoma State offered the 5-11, 210-pound Neal. He considered the Cowboys, but committed to Kansas and then head coach Les Miles. This season Neal has rushed for 412-yards and four touchdowns.

"He's fast. He's physical, strong physically,” Gundy said of Neal, who is also slated to play outfield for Kansas in baseball. “I don't know what his size is right now (210-pounds), but we felt like he would be a 200-pounder after he's in school for a year or so. I don't have any idea how big he is now, but we liked his physique and what we thought could be a really good college running back."

Neal beat Gundy and Oklahoma State’s timeline on his size. Overall, Gundy said he has seen lots of positives, things he did not expect to see in Kansas.

“Defensively they make plays. First thing I did was flip on the Kansas and Duke game from about four weeks ago and start working my way back. I thought I was going to see a blowout and there was 2:56 left in the third quarter and Kansas was ahead. I watched other things that happened in (Saturday’s) game. They are a well-coached team. He does a great job with technique and fundamentals. Every week they're getting better, and I saw their best performance against Oklahoma." 

Gundy said he had actually seen some of Buffalo on television when Leipold was coaching the Bulls. He was impressed with that team that relied on defense and running the football. It appears that has been what Leipold in building from the ground up at Kansas.

“From what I've seen, and I've seen quite a bit, they're fundamentally sound,” Gundy added on Kansas. “In my opinion, they're well coached, from what I see. I like and don't like the direction they're going.

Gundy was joking here, but it is easy to appreciate what he is saying.

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Cowboys are looking to bouce back against KU.

“I appreciate quality coaching and fundamentals and technique and stuff, but not when I have to play against them."

On the Oklahoma State side, the Cowboys are coming off a loss and will be resolute in getting back on the winning side. Also, Kansas did the rest of the opponents on their schedule a favor with the effort against Oklahoma. Only fools will take Kansas for granted and as an easy win on the schedule the rest of the way. Nobody wants to be on the butt end of a Kansas Jayhawk joke.

Discussion from...

Gundy Sees Leipold's Approach with Kansas

732 Views | 2 Replies | Last: 1 mo ago by Joe Khatib
How long do you want to ignore this user?
Can't sleep on Kansas.....looked good at times Saturday. GO POKES!!! BEAT THE JAYWALKERS!!!
Joe Khatib
How long do you want to ignore this user?

Can't sleep on Kansas.....looked good at times Saturday. GO POKES!!! BEAT THE JAYWALKERS!!!
The OU secondary is AWFUL! Almost every team they have played this year has found a way to exploit their pass defense, it is quite amazing that they are 8 - 0 on the season!!!
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