Scout.com ranking: 24 In the midst of reviving Cowboy football, Gundy landed what he hoped would be another key class, stacked with seven four-star recruits including DE Richetti Jones and WR Dez Bryant. Add four-star CB William Cole into the mix and the Cowboys were sitting pretty, building the foundation for a Big 12 dynasty -- only it didn’t turn out quite that way. Jones never lived up potential due to injury, and Cole was dismissed from the team after his freshman season. The only redeeming member of the class was Bryant, who had a chance to become the greatest receiver in OSU history had he not been ruled ineligible during his junior year. He was named a second-team freshman All-American, finished third in the NCAA in total touchdowns (21) his sophomore year, and was considered a Heisman candidate heading into his junior season.
2011: Sims, Walsh, Roland
Scout.com ranking: 18 2011 was a big year for Gundy and Oklahoma State. He not only notched his first five-star recruit, but the Cowboys also would win their first Big 12 title and pull off their first 12-win season. Five-star running back recruit Herschel Sims provided decent backup in OSU’s backfield during his freshman season, but he was be dismissed from the team before his sophomore campaign for an alleged money flap. Still, Gundy was building for the future, not just for the present, and successfully did so with this class. He also landed QB J.W. Walsh, RB Desmond Roland, LB Ryan Simmons, and S Lyndell Johson, all four-stars who would later play key roles for the Cowboys. Also of note in the 2011 class were defensive tackle James Castleman and receiver David Glidden, both three-stars who flourished in their senior seasons.
Tim Heitman-USA TODAY SportsTim Heitman
2010: Lewis, Lavey, Randle
Scout.com ranking: 18 Oklahoma State’s 2010 class contained only a quartet of four-star recruits but was fortified by a year-high 23 three-star recruits, including future All-American Justin Gilbert. Additionally, a pair of the four-stars stepped up big as freshmen to help the Cowboys achieve their first 11-win season in program history. RB Joseph Randle finished seventh in the Big 12 in rushing yards per carry (5.5), providing a solid backup for All-American Kendall Hunter. CB Shaun Lewis played a similar reinforcement job in the Cowboy secondary, forcing a team-high three fumbles. Four-star LB Caleb Lavey was set back by injury as a freshman but went on to be a solid defensive force. A handful of players from the class, including OL Daniel Koenig and CB Larry Stephens, would later go on to be consistent contributors as upperclassmen.
2006: Cox, Cate, Savage
Scout.com ranking: 16 Gundy did quite a job of attracting talented players to his first full recruiting class, which was at the time Oklahoma State’s best of the modern era, and was a big boost for the program after Les Miles’ departure. While he didn’t lure any five-star recruits to Stillwater, he managed to nab nine four-star recruits, including CB Perrish Cox and QB Alex Cate. Cate didn't live up to the hype, never landing the starting job and only completing four passes in his OSU career, but Cox and Dantrell Savage, a junior-college transfer running back, had instant impacts on OSU, helping the Cowboys resurrect the program from the dreary depths of a 4-7 record in 2005 to a 7-6 tally in 2006. Cox and lineman Russell Okung, who blossomed in his sophomore season, have gone on to attain success in the NFL.
David K Purdy
2014: Hill, Rudolph, Washington
Scout.com ranking: 14 Gundy has assembled some strong recruiting classes in his tenure, but the 2014 iteration is the top-ranked in his decade at the helm in Stillwater. The Cowboys locked down seven four-star recruits (later reduced to six after the dismissal of Devon Thomas), and one highly prized, five-star recruit in RB Tyreek Hill. Hill had an impressive season and went on to create one of the most exciting moments in Bedlam history; however, his Cowboy career ended after that game, as he was dismissed from the team after becoming entwined in a domestic abuse scandal. A trio of three-stars also played crucial roles as true freshmen. WR James Washington caught for nearly 500 yards, CB Ramon Richards did well filling in for injured teammates in the secondary, and QB Mason Rudolph helped right the course of OSU football.