After watching his friend and rival Sam Bradford go down with a shoulder injury, Texas quarterback Colt McCoy could have been excused for having second thoughts about not going to the NFL last spring. Did the hit that landed the Oklahoma quarterback on the injured list make him worry it could happen to him before he gets a chance to collect an NFL paycheck? "Not at all,” said McCoy, last season’s runner-up to Bradford for the Heisman Trophy. "You’ve got just as much of a chance getting hurt riding in a car as you do playing the game of football.” The odds get worse for a quarterback playing behind an inexperienced offensive line like Bradford was. McCoy is protected by a much more experienced group that has three seniors among four returning starters from last season. Oklahoma hopes Bradford will be able to return in a few weeks, maybe in time to play Texas on Oct. 17 in Dallas. The No. 2 Longhorns (1-0) play at Wyoming (1-0) this Saturday. Bradford sprained the AC joint in his throwing (right) shoulder when a BYU defender hit him and he fell on his right side. "That’s one of the worst ways you can get hit, when you’re falling on your shoulder and you can’t do anything about it” McCoy said. "I certainly hope the best for him. He’s a good friend.” Georgia Tech rallies past Clemson Scott Blair kicked a 36-yard field goal with 57 seconds left, and No. 15 Georgia Tech defeated Clemson 30-27 in Atlanta after squandering a 24-point lead Thursday night. Clemson (1-1, 0-1 Atlantic Coast Conference) scored 27 straight points, taking its first lead of the night on Richard Jackson’s 53-yard field goal with 11:33 to go. But Georgia Tech, which did nothing offensively through most of the second and third quarters, finally came back to life. The Yellow Jackets (2-0, 1-0) put together a 69-yard drive to set up Blair’s tying kick, a 34-yarder with 5:40 left that made it 27-all. Then, after a holding penalty on Clemson’s Thomas Austin wiped out Kyle Parker’s 38-yard completion to Jacoby Ford, Georgia Tech got a chance to win it. Josh Nesbitt hooked up with Demaryius Thomas for a 39-yard pass, making up for a miserable passing performance by the Georgia Tech quarterback who completed only 3 of 14 for 83 yards with two interceptions. After Thomas’ catch, the Yellow Jackets moved into position for Blair’s winning kick.
GEORGIA GOING WITH COX AT QBSenior quarterback Joe Cox will start against South Carolina on Saturday, offensive coordinator Claude Felton said. There were reports Thursday morning that Cox, who started in last week’s loss to Oklahoma State, had an "arm issue” that had limited his repetitions this week. According to the reports, sophomore Logan Gray had been designated to start against the Gamecocks. But Felton said the reports were wrong and that Cox would start. He also said that Gray, who also is used as a punt returner, might see some action at quarterback.
TEAMS TACKLING SWINE FLUHelmets and shoulder pads. And hand sanitizer. College football players are protecting themselves not just from injury this season but also from swine flu. With outbreaks reported at the universities of Mississippi and Wisconsin, players are under orders to wash their hands and cover their mouths when they cough or sneeze, lest their teams join those who have been hit hard by the bug. Coaches are fretting the possibility of having to play games short-handed. "It scares us to death,” Texas coach Mack Brown said. Swine flu hasn’t been a problem for the Longhorns so far, but the list of teams affected has been growing steadily. Duke, Tulane, Mississippi, Wisconsin and Washington State have all had dozens of players come down with fever, coughing, body aches and sore throats — all H1N1 symptoms. "We just hope that if we do get a case or two that it will be isolated,” said Kentucky coach Rich Brooks, "And at this point, we’re among the fortunate ones that haven’t gone through it — and hope that it doesn’t happen at the worst time with the wrong players.”
PAC-10 RENEWS EMERALD DEALThe Emerald Bowl has renewed its agreement with the Pac-10 conference but will no longer have an ACC team in the game in San Francisco starting next season. The bowl announced that it signed a four-year deal with the Pac-10. The Emerald Bowl will have the sixth pick in the conference. The other team in the game will come from either the Western Athletic Conference, Army or Navy. The WAC will provide one of its top three teams in 2010 and 2013. Army will get a bid in 2011 and Navy in 2012, provided they’re bowl eligible.