Carpenter Claims OSU's Coach Fired Him For Wearing Rival's T-Shirt

Oklahoma Cowboys coach Mike Gundy fires carpenterOklahoma State Cowboys coach Mike Gundy is a passionate man. Since taking the reins of the 8th-ranked football team in the country, he has led it through nine-win consecutive seasons in 2008 and 2009 and a record 11-2 win last year. But Gundy still thinks the team needs to work on its defense, and is setting a personal example, allegedly firing his carpenter for simply showing up to work in an Oklahoma Sooner baseball tee.

The Oklahoma Cowboys and Oklahoma Sooners have a longstanding rivalry known as the Bedlam Series. Bedlam means "noisy uproar and confusion," which is exactly what happened here.

Last Thursday, Brent Loveland filed a breach-of-contract suit against Gundy and his wife Kristen for damages in excess of $10,000, the Tulsa World reported. In February, Gundy hired Loveland in a verbal contract to perform trim installation on his new house in Stillwater. When Loveland showed up for the first day on March 21, he was wearing the logo of Oklahoma University.

Loveland claimed he dressed in the dark.

Gundy did not take well to Loveland's sartorial choice. According to Loveland, Gundy confronted him and said, "How dare you come into my house and offend my wife?" When Loveland asked what he meant, Gundy shot back, "That [expletive] shirt you have on." He then allegedly told Loveland to "pack his [expletive] and get off [his] property."

This kind of impassioned outburst is not totally out-of-character for the former OS star quarterback. In a postgame interview in 2007, Gundy railed on a local columnist in the Daily Oklahoman for writing a piece critical of one of his players.

"That article had to have been written by a person that doesn't have a child," he shouted. "And has never had a child that had his heart broken and come home upset and had to deal with a child when he is upset."

He called the newspaper "garbage" and "the editor who let it come out is garbage."

This time, however, Gundy's fervent defense of his team could cost him real cash.

Loveland claims that he turned down a number of other construction jobs to work on Gundy's estate, losing more than $30,000 in potential income from the debacle.

In a statement released by Gundy's attorney, Willie Baker, an Oklahoma State graduate himself, Gundy is quoted as saying, "While I cannot discuss the specifics of pending litigation, I deny the allegations being made and welcome the opportunity to fully resolve the matter."

Loveland's lawyer, Edward White, insists this is no rivalry taken from the field to the courts. "I'm an OSU guy, so this is not a vendetta," he told the Stillwater News-Press. "This is simply a gentleman who's a small-business owner. He depends on his work for his livelihood and he didn't get paid for a job where he thinks he was unreasonably terminated."

If Gundy's loses the case, at least his bank account can handle the hit. His seven-year contract with Oklahoma State is worth $15.7 million.





Next: UPS Worker Charged With Stealing Cell Phones From Plant



Don't Miss: Top 10 Companies Hiring Now




Stories from FINS Finance


Filed under: Employment News

Claire Gordon

Staff Writer

Claire Gordon has contributed to Slate's DoubleX, the Huffington Post, and the book Prisons: Current Controversies. While an undergraduate at Yale University and a research fellow at Yale graduate school, she spoke on panels at Yale and Cornell, and reported from Cairo, Tokyo, and Berlin.

Follow Claire on Twitter. Email Claire at claire.gordon@teamaol.com. Add Claire to your Google+ circles.

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum

280 Comments

Filter by:
hud

Let's all pretend the contractor doesn't have an obligation to use his brain. If he was so concerned about lost wages then why didn't he use better judgement. I applaud the coach for his convictions, for speaking up, and acting decisively.

The contractor will think twice about what it means to be a businessman and how to treat a customer. Unless of course we reward his insolence.

September 06 2011 at 9:43 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
bredmond

They're both wrong; the carpenter should not have worn the shirt but the coach didn't have a right to fire the guy over a school shirt unless it had an offensive slogan on it. I don't wear Penn State gear when working on a project at Pitt.

August 18 2011 at 8:55 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
georgia

Clue to those outside Oklahoma who read this story. Remember the Alabama fan who poisoned the tree at Auburn? Oklahoma Sooner fans are just as bad, maybe worse. It also does not surprise me that the carpenter in question did not realize what he was wearing because he got dressed in the dark. Most OU fans are totally in the dark about their arrogance and rudeness, and try to shove their colors and logo in everyones face expecting them to just take it . Way to go Coach. Verbal contract? WEAK!!

August 18 2011 at 12:07 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
jnppers

what an ass----passion? passionate? no, the guy is just a hothead who needs anger-managment classes---that he should pay for himself from his fat bank account----set a better example for boys and men to admire!

August 17 2011 at 11:23 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
whoalst

Grundy is a real horses' patoot!

August 17 2011 at 11:21 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
debquilt

I live in Stillwater and although I do not know Mr. and Mrs Gundy extremely well I do know that they had voluntarily given much of their time towards children's sports and have done much to increase children's self-respect and the virtue of sportsmanship. Mrs. Gundy taught my daughter in her first grade class at school. My daughter is now 30. I remember Mrs. Gundy as a kind, patient person during our parent-teacher talks. I simply do not believe the allegations that the carpenter has made toward's the Gundy's. That carpenter showed unbelievably poor judgement towards his customer. I believe that that carpenter is headed towards bankruptcy simply for massive failure to consider the needs of his customers.

August 17 2011 at 10:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
robsjunknstuff4u

Well...he is the boss.

August 17 2011 at 10:51 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Beth

Honestly, the carpenter should just be paid what he is due according to what the contract stipulates which should be a third, which is a fair amount. Yes, he was unlawfully terminated and being that he is selfemployed isnt entitled to unemployment compensation or something comparible. However, if a contract is in place then thats what the judge or attorney will consider. Lest have no fear that OSU coach will pay for being a threatening menace if anything else.

August 17 2011 at 10:25 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
belldn3

First off OU is the better school. How many football championships does OSU have??????? Yeah right, nobody knows, not even OSU. Gundy is obviously an *******. Exactly how was his wife offened, by seeing maybe a real man in the house?????????? Hope the carpenter nails his ass to the wall and then nails his wife in the bedroom.

August 17 2011 at 10:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Rickey

The carpenter has to have a lot of animosity for OSU to show up at the OSU coaches house in an OU shirt. I graduated from OSU in 1979 and 1982. Respect your clients enough to not disrespect them in their own house.

August 17 2011 at 9:52 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Search Jobs

In Partnership With
Keywords:
Location:

Search Articles

Top Companies Hiring

April 20 - April 27

Looking for work? See what companies added new openings this week.