Oklahoma State football coach Mike Gundy remains vague on Alan Bowman, QB situation

STILLWATER — Oklahoma State’s starting quarterback situation seemingly remains unsolved.
At least, that’s the message coach Mike Gundy delivered Monday when asked specifically if veteran Alan Bowman will remain the starter.
“We’re working through that this week in practice,” Gundy said at his weekly news conference.
Bowman was the lone quarterback to play in the Week 4 loss at Iowa State, getting the nod over a three-man rotation that included Garret Rangel and Gunnar Gundy throughout the first three games.
Against the Cyclones, Bowman completed 23 of 48 passes for 278 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions, including one on the final drive on a fourth-down play. He also rushed for a touchdown.
With the Cowboys hosting Kansas State at 6:30 p.m. Friday in Boone Pickens Stadium on ESPN, Bowman could make his fourth straight start for the Cowboys and perhaps play his second straight complete game as planned.
Instead, the guessing game continues.
Perhaps, some of that is smoke and mirrors from Gundy in an effort to keep Kansas State preparing for a trio of passers.
Because Gundy said he was pleased with Bowman against the Cyclones.
“He played pretty good,” Gundy said. “He had some decisions that we wish would have been different. But overall and the total number of plays, he played pretty good.”
Gundy also liked Bowman’s poise and leadership.
“He’s been that way from Day 1,” Gundy said. “Very mature, older, been around, seen a lot of different things in his career and he’s been good for us.”
Here is a look at other key highlights from Gundy’s visit with media:
Gundy on Pokes With A Purpose collective: ‘Very, very important’
Not long after OSU’s loss in Ames, Iowa, several players began pushing for fan support of OSU’s name, image and likeness collective, Pokes With A Purpose.
Gundy said he did not see those posts, but he fully supports the collective and its efforts to aid players and the community.
“The NIL and the collective is very, very important,” Gundy said. “It is becoming a part of college football and I think it’s here to stay. So, it is very important and it’s something that I guess is going to grow from here on out. What direction it will go? Nobody knows.
“But it is very important. It’s part of what we do. And Pokes With A Purpose has done a great job. How they work with our administration in the future is important. I think they’re trying to work through all that right now, as is every other school in the country.”
But Gundy said the university is not promoting NIL opportunities in recruiting.
That’s for a very specific reason.
“We don’t here because it’s illegal,” Gundy said. “I don’t break the rules. I don’t know if other people do or not.”
More:Where will Oklahoma State football find four more wins to gain bowl eligibility?
OSU’s Trey Rucker remains active after arrest
Cowboys safety Trey Rucker remains active heading into Saturday despite his recent arrest for allegedly driving under the influence.
Gundy said a decision on Rucker’s status will happen at a later date.
“He’s active until the system takes its place and we can make a decision,” Gundy said. “Essentially, I can’t get ahead of the process based on the type of incident that took place. I’ve got to let the system run its course and then make a decision from that point.”
Rucker, 22, was charged last week in Payne County District Court with operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol. Prosecutors filed the charge as a felony because they allege it is his second alcohol-related offense.
A redshirt senior, Rucker has started all four games for the Cowboys this season. He has 18 tackles, including a tackle for loss.
If he plays, it leaves the Cowboys with possibly just one safety position to fill.
Starter Lyrik Rawls remains a “day-to-day guy” due to an undisclosed reason after he did not make the trip to Iowa State, according to Gundy. Redshirt freshman Cameron Epps started in place of Rawls and would get the nod again Saturday.
Last season’s shut-out loss at Kansas State not a factor
Losing 48-0 at Kansas State a year ago is nothing but a memory now, according to Gundy.
He said he hasn’t brought it up with players. Neither have other coaches.
“I don’t think that factors in much,” Gundy said. “We have to practice well and get ready for this game. I’ve never really used past experiences as motivation.”
But Gundy did say the Wildcats were the “best team we’ve played so far overall in all three phases.”
That is in part to the play of senior Will Howard, who though in his fourth season overall has played in 26 games despite not being the full-time starter until this season.
“The improvement that they've made over the last couple of years is their quarterback,” Gundy said while asking how many years Howard has been in Manhattan. “Remember years ago, they were struggling but he’s played so many games now that he’s gotten better. I see that as where their improvements come from.”
Extra points
Gundy said he would trust kicker Alex Hale could make a field goal from as far as 57 yards. “Maybe further. I’m not sure.” Hale has made a 52- and 53-yard field goal this season.
Gundy still wants to get star receiver Brennan Presley the football more after he’s totaled just 15 receptions for 98 yards and two TDs. “He needs to be involved more.”
Gundy also said he does not listen to sports talk radio, which means he has not heard his brother’s new show. Cale Gundy hosts “Gundy Monday” on The Sports Animal, but Mike isn’t making an exception. “I would think about jumping off my back deck before I would listen to talk radio,” he said.
Jacob Unruh covers Oklahoma State athletics for The Oklahoman. Have a story idea for Jacob? He can be reached atjunruh@oklahoman.com or on X/Twitter at@jacobunruh. Sign up forthe Oklahoma State Cowboys newsletter to access more OSU coverage. Support Jacob’s work and that of other Oklahoman journalists by purchasinga digital subscription today at subscribe.oklahoman.com or by using the link at the top of this page.
OSU vs. Kansas State
KICKOFF: 6:30 p.m. Friday at Boone Pickens Stadium in Stillwater

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