Sidebars to the Holder Zoom and Investigation Results: Haircut? and Twitter War

Robert Allen

STILLWATER -- The simple and lighter sidebar into the release on July 2 of statements by athletic director Mike Holder and Oklahoma State University President Burns Hargis backing head football coach Mike Gundy after an investigation into the program by Holder and deputy athletic director Chad Weiberg is that there are reports that Mike Gundy cut his hair. Nothing like the crew cut he used to wear in his first few years as head coach, but reports are the "Arkansas waterfall" of a mullet may be gone. 

No public sightings yet.

The more serious and aggressive sidebar to the Gundy investigation is the Twitter battle between Oklahoma State head basketball coach Mike Boynton and USA Today sports columnist Dan Wolken. 

Wolken tweeted this on his personal Twitter account moments after Hargis released his statement, also on Twitter.

What followed was a long line of responses from everybody from other media members, a lot of fans (some Oklahoma State and some obviously other schools) and one very defensive tweet from Oklahoma State head basketball coach Mike Boynton, who has always had a pretty strong Twitter game. In fact, last week he went to Twitter to comment on a story that SI/Maven did on off season projections for Big 12 basketball. 

It was pretty obvious that the insinuation about Holder and Weiberg was not a laughing matter to Boynton. 

Boynton wasn't alone as he had allies in his opinion. 

Holder revealed that he used Boynton to bounce ideas off of. Holder even referred that he needed Boynton to give him a perspective that he, himself, can't possible replicate or imagine.

“His experience as a person is different than mine. I’m a 71-year-old white man. I have no comprehension of what it’s like to be black or African-American in America today. None," Holder said. "I have empathy for the African-Americans, especially those athletes who are under my charge. So it’s important for me to seek out someone who can give me a better perspective on it. So every day, you have to remind yourself to be objective and only judge people based on what you see in front of you. Not the fact that it’s a female or a male. Everybody deserves a fair shot in this world today, and that’s what I love about athletics. It’s a meritocracy. You earn what you get. You eat what you kill. Maybe that’s not an analogy. Yeah, I’m interested in Mike Boynton’s perspective as an African-American and someone who I respect because of who he is and what he stands for every single day. We need more people like him.”

Some of the Fourth of July fireworks coming out of Stillwater and Oklahoma State University capping what has been a very interesting and newsworthy summer despite the fact that there is a serious COVID-19 pandemic going on and a real push for change in the social beliefs, standards, and actions of Americans.