With the end of 2019 nigh, we’re pumping out countdown posts, not just for the end of the year, but the end of the decade.
We’ve kicked things off by looking back at Oklahoma State Cowboys head football coach Mike Gundy’s best victories during the last 10 years. I suggest you go read numbers 10-6 that we put out Monday, before you read the remainder of the list.
No. 5 - 2018 Texas
OSU 38 - Texas 35
Maybe there’s some recency bias here, but similar to the West Virginia win in 2018, knocking off the best Texas team in a decade, at home, on homecoming, is something.
The final score was close, but OSU came out and dominated this game in the first half, building a 31-14 halftime lead, before hanging on for the victory.
It’s weird that a season most fans want to forget had some really memorable wins.
Along with the big win, throw in the greatest throwback uniforms ever sewn together, a BS “fight” at the end, and another example of why Tom Herman is a man-child and Gundy is the awesome, and you’ve got a game to remember.
No. 4 - 2013 Baylor
OSU 49 - Baylor 17
OSU has only won one game when ESPN’s “College GameDay” was in town (Marcus Smart was the guest picker... as a student!). And it was a BEAUTY of a win!
Baylor came into Stillwater undefeated, ranked No. 4, and marching toward a possible National Championship game birth, until they tripped up big time.
It was just utter domination by the Cowboys. Of course it didn’t hurt that Baylor turned into the Keystone Cops on that cold night in October.
Also, again, a college basketball player was a big enough star to be the guest picker on “College GameDay.” Smart, ya’ll. Maacus frickin’ Smaat.
No. 3 - 2012 Fiesta Bowl
OSU 41 - Stanford 38
OSU has won a lot of bowl games, but a No. 3 vs No. 4 match-up before the play-off existed when OSU’s best team ever facing off against an Andrew Luck-led Stanford team is the cream of the crop.
OSU got down 14 in the second quarter, before scoring 21 points over the final 9 minutes of the first half thanks to a couple of big #Weeden2Blackmon plays and... a Weeden rushing TD.
The game was won, in part, thanks to three missed field goals by Stanford. Including one in the final seconds of regulation and another in overtime. Meanwhile Quinn Sharp was a perfect 2-for-2 on the day, including the game winner in OT.
This win remains one of the top-5 all time for Gundy for me, and barring a coupe more Big 12 championships or — dare I say it, a national championship — it always will.
No. 2 - 2011 Bedlam
OSU 44 - Oklahoma 10
Of course the top two were going to be Bedlam wins.
OSU’s one and only Big 12 title came after a Bedlam beatdown. Any win over Oklahoma is big, but one that earns you a conference title? Oh heck yeah.
It’s wild to realize that this game was never really close. OSU built a 24-3 halftime lead then pushed it to 44-3 before OU scored a meaningless touchdown late in the fourth.
It’s not just that OSU win this game — which is rare enough in it’s own right — it’s that it embarrassed OU in the way that it did, forcing five turnovers, three of which directly led to touchdowns.
No. 1 - 2014 Bedlam
OSU 38 - Oklahoma 35
This is going to sound weird because the Bedlam win in 2011 gave OSU its only Big 12 title, but I could argue this was a bigger win for Gundy. The main reason? Because it was believed at the time that without the win Gundy may have lost his job.
Seriously, there was an editorial in the student paper calling for Gundy’s job after the five game losing streak.
Instead, they pulled off an improbable, come from behind, overtime win thanks to Bob kicking again.
Is there a single bigger play during the Gundy era than Tyreek Hill’s punt return TD to tie the game and send it into overtime? I don’t know.
But I know this, for the way it changed the direction of the entire program, the 2014 Bedlam win is the biggest of the decade for OSU.
Runner-ups: 2011 Kansas State, 2013 Texas, 2011 Baylor, 2016 Alamo Bowl