The Oklahoma State Cowboys pulled off one of the best comebacks of the year in their 37-35 win over Notre Dame in the 2022 PlayStation Fiesta Bowl. Oklahoma State’s success in 2021 can be attributed to the culture that has been installed in Stillwater, Okla., under the guidance of head coach Mike Gundy for the past 17 seasons.
The Cowboys trailed the Fighting Irish by as much as 21 points on Saturday and they rallied for a two-point win. The Fiesta Bowl was one of the most entertaining bowl games in recent memory.
Gundy’s play-calling led to the miraculous comeback victory over No. 5 Notre Dame. It was the largest comeback win in school history, and Gundy’s squad never wavered. The Cowboys had the advantage on the sidelines with an experienced coach in Gundy compared to Notre Dame’s rookie head coach, Marcus Freeman.
— OSU Cowboy Football (@CowboyFB) January 3, 2022
With the way Oklahoma State started the game, it could have been easy for them to concede the rest of the game to Notre Dame. For starters, Oklahoma State and Notre Dame were the two teams in the running for the final College Football Playoff spot. Since the Cowboys failed to make the Playoff after their loss to Baylor, they could have mailed in the Fiesta Bowl.
The Fiesta Bowl was just a New Year’s Six bowl and it did not have the same implications as the College Football Playoff. Gundy managed to rally the troops and they found a purpose in the second half. The Cowboys played hard for their seniors and it paid off. Their effort came down to the way they were coached by Gundy and his coaching staff.
On the year, Oklahoma State finished with a 12-2 record. This was the second time in Gundy’s career that his team won 12 wins in a season. His career record is 149-69 with a .683 winning percentage.
— Mike Gundy (@CoachGundy) January 2, 2022
Gundy has the most wins among active Big 12 head coaches heading into the 2022 season. He is also the program leader in wins. Oklahoma State has one Big 12 Championship under Gundy and he won two Big 12 Coach of the Year awards in 2010 and 2021.
He changed the culture at Oklahoma State and turned them into a perennial Big 12 contender. For the past 10 years, Gundy has been looked at as one of the best coaches in the nation. Oklahoma State is not as much of a powerhouse as Oklahoma, Alabama, and Ohio State, but they are just as consistent as those schools are. Gundy belongs in the College Football Hall of Fame for what he has done with the Cowboys.