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Mike Gundy's will receive $1 million paycut, shorter contract after internal review

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Head coach Mike Gundy watches on during the Oklahoma State Football spring practice in Boone Pickens Stadium in Stillwater on Saturday April 20,2019. 

Mike Gundy's contract is going to look very different over the next couple of seasons.

After an internal review of the Oklahoma State football program by Athletic Director Mike Holder, Deputy AD Chad Weiberg, OSU basketball coach Mike Boynton and many former football players, Gundy will receive a $1 million voluntary paycut, a cut in contract length from 5 years to 4 years and his buyout price drops from 75% to 50%.

Holder confirmed that Gundy suggested these changes.

This comes after a recent incident in which Gundy's decision to wear a One America News t-shirt sparked outrage from current and former players. But, as Holder pointed out, the t-shirt was just the start of things.

“This isn’t about a T-shirt,” Holder said Friday. “This was about a lot of different things.”

After the review, Holder concluded that Gundy needs to put more effort into having personal connections with players of all races. 

"We learned that our players love OSU," Holder said. "They love being on our football team and they love their teammates. There are a lot more positives about our program than negatives. Players want to be great, and they're willing to make sacrifices. They're unselfish and loyal. Our coaches have done a great job of recruiting high-character young men. The missing link has been a more intimate relationship with their head coach. They respect him as an excellent gameday coach, but they want more coaching on a personal level. This crosses all racial lines. Our players want a better connection to Mike Gundy. They view him as a difference-maker, and they want him to help them grow as leaders."

While these changes could be a lot to process in a short period of time, Holder says that they've already had a lasting impact on Gundy. 

"[Gundy's] reaction has been everything that you would want," Holder said. "He has been humbled, remorseful and committed to change. As uncomfortable as the last two weeks have been, I believe this experience has changed Mike Gundy and our players will be the beneficiaries. At the end of our journey, the decision was obvious that Mike Gundy is an excellent coach and he's accomplished a lot in his 15-year career. However, the best is yet to come."

sports.ed@ocolly.com