DALLAS — Like Mike Gundy, Kliff Kingsbury is now head coach at the Big 12 school where he was previously a standout quarterback.
There is a big difference between the two.
Kingsbury is just getting started at Texas Tech, where this fall he will be the youngest coach in a BCS automatic-qualifying league. He will be 34 when the Red Raiders play their season opener Aug. 30 at SMU.
Gundy, meanwhile, is going into his ninth season at Oklahoma State. His
Cowboys have been tabbed as the preseason pick to win the conference title.
“I’ve been very fortunate to be at Oklahoma State. I’ve said that, and I mean it,” Gundy said Monday. “They took me on as a young player when I don’t think most coaches would have. ... I don’t know that I would have recruited me.
“They gave me an opportunity, and it worked out well. And obviously as an assistant coach and been fortunate enough to be the head coach,” he said. “For me personally, and I think it’s different for everybody, it means more to me to be at Oklahoma State.”
On the first day of Big 12 media days, Gundy was the first coach to take the podium. Kingsbury was the fifth and last of the day. In between were Kansas State’s Bill Snyder, TCU’s Gary Patterson and second-year Kansas coach Charlie Weis. The league’s other five teams — Baylor, Iowa State, Oklahoma, Texas and West Virginia — will be featured today.
Gundy was a Cowboys assistant for four seasons before becoming head coach, which was 16 years after his last game at quarterback. He threw for 8,473 yards from 1986-89, leaving as the Big Eight Conference career passing leader and with a school record that stood until Brandon Weeden broke it two years ago.
Kingsbury had several since-broken Big 12 records after his final game at Texas Tech in 2002, ending a four-season run when he threw for 12,429 yards and 95 TDs in 43 games.