Oklahoma assistant coach Cale Gundy resigns after reading aloud ‘word that I should never … have uttered’

Longtime Oklahoma Football assistant coach Cale Gundy announced Sunday that he was stepping down from the program.

In a message on Twitter during a film session, Gundy explained that he read aloud a word “that I should never – under any circumstances – have said.” He said he read the iPad of one of his players who was distracted.

“At the moment I didn’t even realize what I was reading and as soon as I did I was horrified,” Gundy said. “I want to be very clear: the words I read aloud from this screen were not my words. What I was wasn’t malicious, it wasn’t even intentional. Still, I’m mature enough to know that whatever my intentions, the word I said was shameful and hurtful.

“The unfortunate reality is that someone in my position can do harm without ever intending to do so. Under these circumstances, a man of character accepts responsibility. I take responsibility for my mistake. I apologize.”

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Gundy said he’s received love and support from those who “know me, my character and my love for the program.” Gundy said he felt this was a “critical moment” for Oklahoma and that the team shouldn’t be distracted.

“I will not do the program I love to distract from this mission,” Gundy wrote. “Of course I leave this part-time job with a heavy heart. Coaching this football team has truly been the passion of my life. But I leave confident that the team will continue to thrive, and I leave with great love for the University of Oklahoma and its athletics department.”

Gundy is stepping down as the longest-serving coach in the Big 12, having coached the Sooners since 1999. He also played quarterback for Oklahoma from 1990 to 1993.

During his career on the Oklahoma touchline, Gundy won a national championship in 2000 and 14 Big 12 titles. He was the team’s running backs coach for 16 years, during which time he coached future NFL running backs Adrian Peterson, DeMarco Murray and Samaje Perine, among others. He spent the last seven seasons as a receiver coach coaching future NFL receivers at Dede Westbrook and CeeDee Lamb.

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In a statement, Oklahoma coach Brent Venables thanked Gundy for his time coaching Oklahoma and said he accepted the retirement “with sadness.” He also noted that Gundy put the “program and welfare of our student-athletes first” in making the decision to retire.

“In coaching and in life, we are all accountable for our actions and the results that come from them,” Venables said. “The culture we are building in our program is based on mutual respect. Our employees here should develop successful student athletes, but also young men with character. As leaders of this program, it’s important that we hold ourselves to the highest standards as we exemplify to our players the kind of men we want them to be.”

Venables announced that offensive analyst L’Damian Washington will step in as the team’s interim wide receivers coach.

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