I’ve had this theory that the longer it takes Mike Gundy to name an offensive coordinator the more likely it will be someone currently on the Oklahoma State staff. I’ve run it by a few long-time Gundy watchers, and they say it makes sense. Now I’m hearing that Gundy’s old coach, Pat Jones, has been saying on a Tulsa radio station that OSU’s next offensive coordinator will be another guy Jones coached:
Here’s why this makes sense:
– There’s not another Dana Holgorsen on the market. If there was, Gundy would have already hired him. And since there’s not — East Carolina’s Lincoln Riley? Did you see the bowl game against Maryland? — there’s no sense pretending.
– Gundy is more interested in play-calling ability than staying ideologically pure to the Air Raid, spread that Holgorsen brought to Stillwater. He’s stated his play-calling priority on more than one occasion.
– Meacham has play-calling experience at his four previous coaching stops, including Stamford, where the production was Holgorsen Lite. School records were set in 2004 for passing yards (2,986), pass completions (256) and completion percentage (59.8). It’s been a while but do you forget how to call plays?
– This would be the first time Gundy has filled a coordinator job by promoting from within. Gundy’s coordinator hiring track record is strong. I’m going to score it 3-1-1. Victories: Holgorsen (Houston), Larry Fedora (Florida) and Bill Young. Defeats: Vance Bedford (Chicago Bears). Tie: Tim Beckman (Ohio State). But all were hired from outside — though Bedford and Young had strong OSU ties. At some point the people you have on staff want proof of loyalty beyond a paycheck. It’s time.
– Gundy can provide a double-shot of loyalty by naming Meacham and Joe Wickline offensive co-coordinators and give them both a raise. I didn’t say the paycheck wasn’t important.
– The Cowboys’ offensive continuity and style of play can be maintained due to the return of quarterback Brandon Weeden and wide receiver Justin Blackmon. There were times when Holgorsen fussed that throwing the ball up to Blackmon in hopes he could come down with it wasn’t in his Air Raid, spread offense. But it worked. The Cowboys open spring practice in two months, which seems a little bit of a tight fit if you’re brining in someone from outside. You’ve got a mature, intelligent quarterback who knows all the plays on Holgorsen’s cocktail napkin and has shown himself smart and savvy enough to deal with the myriad of variations.
– Gundy can use this as an opportunity to push the running game a little more, another of his preferences.
– Mike Leach would have been fun, but who said Gundy is interested in fun?
– Boone Pickens will be satisfied. The return of Weeden and Blackmon offers enough assurance of a offensive production. And most insiders believe Boone wasn’t dead set on hiring Holgorsen and his biggest gripe wasn’t Gundy’s play-calling. It was the time his head coach/football CEO spent sitting on an equipment box drawing plays while his defense was on the field. Promote Meacham or Meacham/Wickline and Gundy can keep a hand in the offense — and if you’re Gundy why wouldn’t you want to — while staying in the crow’s nest as a head coach.