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‘It’s lonely at the top’: Gundy trying to stay positive after Bedlam loss

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Oklahoma State Head Coach Mike Gundy waves and talks with the crowd after the season opener at Boone Pickens Stadium in Stillwater on Saturday, September 19, 2020. Oklahoma State won the game 16-7. JOHN CLANTON, TULSA WORLD

Football is an emotional roller coaster for everyone involved, and after an emotional loss in a rivalry game, emotions are tough to control.

“The coaches are just as bad as the players,” coach Mike Gundy said. “When you lose a game like that and we talk to the team, if I don't remind them, they all go in and change their clothes and shower and go sit on the bus and get ready to ride home and eat a pizza. They have to be involved in this also. Losing games and then losing games like Bedlam are always going to be painful.”

Gundy is trying to remain positive on the rest of the season, and keep the team focused on the next challenge ahead of them.

“Just like in raising your children at home,” Gundy said. “It's not always going to go the way it's supposed to be, so what do we do? Do we just check it in? Or do we buck up and figure out a way to make it better? That's what we do. Our players have to learn to overcome these situations, and my job is to be the guy to lay the groundwork and show them how it happens.”

However, when someone is a head coach at a high profile program, losing games comes with a lot of backlash from fans and even family.

“It's lonely, man,” Gundy said. “Kids at the house won't talk to me. The ol' lady won't talk to me. Family won't talk to me. I probably don't even get to go to Thanksgiving. I'll tell you this right now, y'all think I'm joking, but it's lonely at the top”

Gundy said he’s never woken up thinking about if he would leave coaching, but he has had tough days and realizes that times get hard, but he’s got his job to do.

“When I get to practice or I have a team meeting, there's going to be 120 people staring at me, and there's probably 118 of them that want an answer,” Gundy said. “I can't stay at home, I can't retire, and I can't not do anything.”

Gundy enjoys what he does and said he’s fine with the season being in a negative spotlight with the season teetering because it makes him better.

“I don't know if I'm any good at being a coach, but I'm probably not any good at doing anything else,” Gundy said. “I'm not good at farming. I lose money farming. So the point being is that this is what I do, this is how I do it, this is what I enjoy doing and I'll be honest with you, I like having my back against the wall. I enjoy that.”