Gundy Says Sanders Will Be ‘Fine,’ ‘Thinks’ Sanders Is Going to Be Back

September 6, 2021

STILLWATER — Spencer Sanders’ status entering the Cowboys’ game against Tulsa this week isn’t definitive, but Mike Gundy is hopeful.

Sanders, Oklahoma State’s quarterback, missed the Pokes’ season-opening win against Missouri State on Saturday because of COVID protocol. Gundy held his weekly media luncheon Monday afternoon in Boone Pickens Stadium. He said he’d prefer to not talk about injuries (COVID was lumped in with that), but he didn’t say one way or the other if Oklahoma State’s quarterback would play Saturday against the Golden Hurricane.

“I would rather not talk about any injuries at this time,” Gundy said. “We’re hoping that he’ll be back. I think he’ll be fine, but I really can’t say, one because we never know how those things can turnout. So, I just prefer to not guess one way or the other.”

Gundy said there is a “strenuous” reintroduction back into the team after going through COVID protocol. Student-athletes have to pass a few physical tests to determine if the virus left any lingering effects. After Saturday’s game, Gundy said Sanders was out from the middle of last week.

In Sanders’ place, sophomore Shane Illingworth complete 55% of his pass attempts for 315 yards and a touchdown. Should Sanders miss the Tulsa game, Illingworth is projected to start again. Behind Illingworth, Gundy said redshirt senior Ethan Bullock would likely be the backup with Gunnar Gundy, Mike’s son, being the third string.

“I need to ask what CDC guidelines are on that, on throwing a football while you’re in protocol,” Gundy said. “Spencer kind of hangs by himself. He’s probably been somewhere. It was dove season, so he could have been dove hunting by himself or he could have been flinging the ball around to somebody for all I know.

“But he’s done it so much, I mean he’s fine. He’ll be fine. He’ll be fine. I think he’s going to be fine, I think he’s going to be back, I just can’t say that because we have a very strenuous introduction back into our team from that, and sometimes they say he’s not ready and sometimes they say he’s ready. That’s not me making that decision.”

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