The race was close, but not too close to call.
Wes Lunt will enter fall camp as Oklahoma State's starting quarterback, coach Mike Gundy announced Thursday. The true freshman enrolled early and outgunned redshirt freshman J.W. Walsh and junior Clint Chelf to earn the gig.
From our news story:
Illinois native Lunt, a 6-foot-4, 211-pound traditional passer, enrolled early this spring and outdueled his more experienced competition to win the job, coach Mike Gundy announced Thursday.
Lunt will be the first true freshman starter for Oklahoma State since Tone Jones in 1993, and no true freshman has ever started a season opener.
"We had to make a decision based on what we thought was best for our offense to score points and then give us the best chance to win football games," Gundy said in a statement. "All three players had good springs, but at some point the decision is made on the field. There's always a comment about who coaches are going to name as the starter at any position, but the coaches usually don't make that decision -- the decision is made by the players. Wes performed better than the other two quarterbacks in the spring."
Said Lunt: "I'm overwhelmed. It's such a humbling experience. Coming in early, I knew I had a chance to compete for the job, and to get it is just overwhelming. I know that we're still going to compete through summer and two-a-days, so it's not over."
It's not a huge surprise. This thing was close. Worth noting: Walsh was recruited by former offensive coordinator Dana Holgorsen, and Chelf was a hometown kid.
Lunt, though? He's the only Illinois player on Oklahoma State's roster, and second-year coordinator Todd Monken went out and got his man. Once his man got on campus, Lunt delivered. Now, he's being rewarded, and it's time to develop him.
Oklahoma State won't be perfect next season, but oh my, will the Cowboys be fun to watch.
Additionally, the Pokes go from a 28-year-old starter who graduated high school in 2002, to an 18-year-old starter who technically hasn't walked at his own high school graduation yet. That's quite a jump, but Lunt's even temper was similar to Brandon Weeden's, and was a trait that no doubt aided him in winning the job.
This race isn't completely over yet, but Lunt can change that quick by validating his status as a leader over the summer and showing up and practicing strong come fall camp.