Once the dust settled from Oklahoma State's loss to Central Michigan on Saturday, Cowboys head coach Mike Gundy released a statement Sunday.
In the statement, Gundy said he's disappointed in himself for calling the play that led to the last-play Hail-Mary lateral touchdown for Central Michigan, but he also lamented the officials' incorrect decision to extend the game.
"Of course in hindsight, I wish I would have done it differently, but in the big picture, the game should have been over," Gundy said. "While I'm disappointed in myself, I am also disappointed that we had 10 rules officials who didn't properly apply the rule."
With four seconds left in the game and the Cowboys holding a three-point lead, OSU quarterback Mason Rudolph heaved the ball down the field on fourth down to run out the clock. Rudolph was called for intentional grounding because he was in the pocket and there were no receivers in the area. The penalty should have ended the game, but the officials awarded the Chippewas an offensively play, leading to the game-winning touchdown.
Gundy's full statement:
I'm disappointed in myself that I called a play that could have been interpreted as intentional grounding. That play has been in our playbook for 12 years now and intentional grounding and an untimed down after the last play of the game never even crossed my mind. Of course in hindsight, I wish I would have done it differently, but in the big picture, the game should have been over. While I'm disappointed in myself, I am also disappointed that we had 10 rules officials who didn't properly apply the rule. I give credit to Central Michigan for coming up with a great play and executing it as well as they did.
My reason for reaching out to you with this statement is this - we have another game on Saturday and letting the end of the Central Michigan game linger into this week would not help our team in any way. I want this to be our final official comment on the end of the Central Michigan game, so we can close the book on it and move forward to Pittsburgh. In our program, we talk all the time about controlling the things we can control and not getting caught up in the things we can't control. We can control how we focus on and prepare for Pittsburgh. We can't control the decisions that were made Saturday, so I do not believe it benefits our coaches or players to dwell on them and re-hash them beyond what we already did during post-game interviews, the comments that our athletic director made yesterday and now with this statement from me today.
OSU Athletic Director Mike Holder called the officiating error incomprehensible.
"We had conversations with everyone that could help us understand the situation and do something about the outcome," Holder said. "We were told the result is final and there is nothing we can do about it. In my mind, it is incomprehensible that a misapplication of the rules after time has expired can't be corrected."
Mid-American Conference officials also released a statement admitting the error, but that the final score would stand.
"The final score shows that Oklahoma State lost the game but that doesn't mean that I have to agree with it," Holder added.