Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops is talking once again. First, he made huge waves by claiming that the national coverage of the SEC is nothing more than media-driven “propaganda.”
However, what seems to be pertinent is the fact that Bob Stoops and his $4 million annual salary seems to have absolutely zero sympathy for the young men ripping their bodies to shreds for him — and for free.
In early April, he told reporters that players were already “paid quite well” for their services, and on Wednesday he took his anti-player stance to yet another level.
His counterpart at Oklahoma State, Mike Gundy, restricted transferring quarterback Wes Lunt from going to any school in the SEC, Pac-12, Big 12 and even Southern Miss and Central Michigan. Gundy’s reasons were that Lunt had stated he had wanted to play closer to his home state of Illinois, so the SEC and Pac-12 did not make sense anyways. However, the point is that a coach can make millions of dollars and then leave for a new school at the drop of a hat without any penalty whatsoever.
But Stoops sided with Gundy, although Stoops has not personally ever levied those types of restrictions on a player himself.
“I support every coach and I support Mike Gundy in every way if they have their issues because all situations are different. I mean that sincerely. Mike’s doing the right thing in his case,” Stoops said at an Oklahoma caravan event on Wednesday night. “A guy says, ‘I’m coming to you’ and you get a running back, and then all of a sudden you don’t have a running back. He leaves. That doesn’t leave your program in a great spot, right? So, I’m totally in agreement.”
The only reason why Lunt was transferring in the first place is because Gundy put him behind senior Clint Chelf and fellow sophomore JW Walsh in the depth chart.
Stoops used the example of a running back, but Gundy is losing a third-string quarterback. If the Cowboys program is not left in a good spot, as Stoops put it, by the loss of a third-stringer, how good of a program is that in the first place?
Not that Stoops is thinking about the benefits to the student-athlete. Lunt would have spent four years on the bench. He would not have helped out the Cowboys at all. However, he will have the opportunity to show what he can do elsewhere — and isn’t collegiate athletics supposed to be about giving these young men the opportunity to show how great they can be, both in the classroom and on the field?
Asked directly if he ever would support a player’s choice to transfer, Stoops said, “No, not really.”
“It isn’t right that they can just do what they want to do,” Stoops said. “It isn’t good. I don’t believe in it. …”
“Nobody made them sign with me. I didn’t force them to, it was what they wanted to do. And because we’re limited in what we’re allowed per scholarship, it’s the right thing to have consequences, otherwise you’d have kids changing their mind every year. It’s not right,” he said.
But Stoops won’t mention the dozens of coaches who do change their minds every year, now will he?