Oklahoma State Names Mason Rudolph Starting QB

It took only three games for Oklahoma State Cowboys head coach Mike Gundy to determine that Mason Rudolph is the quarterback of the future for the program. Gundy made it official Wednesday that Rudolph will be the team’s starting quarterback for the beginning of next season.

After Daxx Garman missed time due to a concussion, Gundy elected to pull the redshirt off of Rudolph and insert him into the lineup as the Cowboys approached Bowl eligibility. Rudolph was the third quarterback to receive a start at the position during the season, and Gundy believes his strong performances over the final three games will be an indicator of the future to come. J.W. Walsh began the season as the starter, but a foot injury caused him to miss most of the season which opened the door for Rudolph.

“Mason is our starting quarterback,” Gundy said Wednesday. “J.W. is going to be in there and get all the reps behind (Rudolph). Daxx (Garman) will get some work.”

In 2014, Rudolph threw for 853 yards and six touchdowns while completing 57 percent of his passes. With another off-season to develop, Rudolph could be among the top Big 12 quarterbacks entering next year as the Cowboys aim to improve their standing. During recruitment, Rudolph was among the nation’s elite high school quarterbacks and many critics of coach Gundy believed the move came too late.

“(Rudolph) was not ready,” Gundy said. “People say, `Well, how do you know?’ I just have to go on 25 years (of coaching experience). What if he goes out there too early, gets sacked six times and gets a concussion like Daxx did? Now what are we going to do? How is (Rudolph’s) demeanor? How is his appearance? How are his leadership skills? It’s not the same.”

Nonetheless, Rudolph and the Cowboys won their final contest of the 2014 season against the Washington Huskies in the TicketCity Cactus Bowl, and now coach Gundy will face the task of improving his team not only at the quarterback position, but all across the board.

 

*Section Photo credit to Ronald Martinez, Getty Images; Featured Photo (above) credit to Mark D. Smith, USA Today Sports. 

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