Mike Gundy explains how he added Brian VanGorder to OK State's support staff

Posted by: Chris Vannini on Friday March 31, 2017


Mike Gundy added a support staffer with a long résumé this offseason in Brian VanGorder, and it came out of the blue.

The former Notre Dame defensive coordinator has coached at 13 different college or NFL teams. He was dismissed at Notre Dame early in the 2016 season and then did some consulting work at Georgia. Now an analyst at Oklahoma State, it's his fist Big 12 stop.

Gundy planned to add support staff this offseason, but he didn’t expect someone with so much experience.

“He’s been really good for our defensive guys,” Gundy said. “He’s got a wealth of experience in 3-down. Essentially, that’s why we brought him in here. I’ll be quite honest with you: I didn’t think we were going to bring in a guy with a track record like him. But he wanted to be in our program. We’re thrilled to have him.

“They tell me he’s bringing a lot to the room in different things with the 3-down defense.”

Oklahoma State isn’t moving to a 3-man front, but will expand its use of multiple fronts.

VanGorder will earn $50,000 in the role in 2017, according to The Oklahoman. The Cowboys were No. 51 in scoring defense last year, allowing 26.5 points per game.

He’s not the only high-profile coach to take an analyst job this offseason. Sonny Dykes went to TCU, Dan Werner and Chris Weinke went to Alabama, and Dameyune Craig went to Florida State.

So how did this one come together?

“Wasn’t any connection,” Gundy said. “He just contacted our people, so we followed up on it.”

Chris Vannini is in his fifth year with CoachingSearch.com and serves as its managing editor. He has previously written for the Detroit Free Press, The Oakland Press, The State News, MLive.com, 247Sports and SB Nation.  A graduate of Michigan State University, Chris now lives in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.  Be sure to follow @coachingsearch and send emails to chris@coachingsearch.com.