Wes Lunt: OSU's about-face too late

Former Oklahoma State quarterback Wes Lunt says Cowboys coach Mike Gundy had lifted restrictions that blocked Lunt from transferring to 37 schools -- including three of his top five -- before he made his final decision on Illinois.

Lunt told Channel 1450, an Illinois radio station, about Gundy's change of heart.

Gundy called Lunt's high school coach, Rochester (Ill.)'s Derek Leonard, to notify him of the decision, but Lunt said he'd already lost contact with coaches at other schools in his top five and decided to stick with Louisville and Illinois. Lunt announced plans to transfer to Illinois on Monday.

Illinois coach Tim Beckman said Tuesday that Lunt's transfer was official.

Gundy had previously prevented Lunt from transferring to schools in the Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC, as well as schools on Oklahoma State's future schedule. He also blocked him from transferring to Southern Miss, where former Oklahoma State offensive coordinator Todd Monken accepted a head-coaching job after the 2012 season. Lunt could still transfer to those schools, but would be unable to accept a scholarship until the 2014 season and would have to pay his own way to school in 2013.

"It was difficult. I didn't understand the process, so when they were blocked, I knew I could appeal but it was going to take awhile," Lunt said of Gundy's blocks. "It was frustrating. I understand the Big 12. That's obvious. The others, it was a little frustrating, but that's part of it and I understand it. It's all good."

Lunt called being named the starter as a true freshman at Oklahoma State last spring "overwhelming" and a whirlwind, but said he enjoyed his time at Oklahoma State. The idea of transferring came to him late in the season.

"It kind of happened during the season when I didn't go back in again. I wanted to play it out through spring ball, because I just loved it there," Lunt said. "I didn't want to leave. After spring ball and talking to Coach Gundy, it was just the right thing to do for me."

Lunt suffered a leg injury in Oklahoma State's third game of 2012, but returned to start in a win against TCU six weeks later. The following week, Lunt suffered a head injury in a loss to Kansas State and Oklahoma State chose to continue to start Clint Chelf at quarterback after Lunt returned to health.

He finished the season with 1,108 passing yards on 81-of-131 passing for six touchdowns and seven interceptions.

"When coach Monken left, I got to know (new Oklahoma State offensive coordinator Mike) Yurcich. Loved him, but ultimately just decided I needed to move on," Lunt said.

He doesn't know when he'll report to Illinois, but is focused on getting accepted to the university, Lunt told the radio station.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.