INDIANAPOLIS — Perrish Cox cost himself a lot of money with his late nights at the Cotton Bowl. He might have cost himself even more money Sunday at the NFL Combine.
Oklahoma State’s wayward cornerback, suspended for his final college game after twice busting curfew in Dallas, did himself no favors when chatting with NFL media at Lucas Oil Stadium. Cox was not defiant, and he expressed contrition at leaving his Cowboy teammates in a lurch some 36 hours before they were to play Ole Miss. But he also talked about how team officials "harassed” him about the issue during his Combine interviews. He used the word "harass” five times in a 10-minute press conference. Maybe Cox doesn’t know the meaning of the word. Maybe he got no coaching from his agent. Maybe he doesn’t know the NFL’s new world order, where knuckleheads’ draft status plummets. "You’re going against the grain,” Gil Brandt said of trying to convince NFL personnel to overlook transgressions. Brandt, the Dallas Cowboys’ scouting director in the Tom Landry days and now chief draft analyst for nfl.com, said Cox is a "talented player. But people now have taken the attitude, they’d rather have a 70 percent dependable player than a 100 percent undependable player. "It’s unfortunate. I don’t think he’s going to go as high as had he not had those two late nights out in Dallas. When he does things like that, it costs him money.” Cox has first-round talent; he’s a very good cornerback with big-play ability returning kicks. First-round talent and 20th-round common sense. Cox missed curfew six nights before the Cotton Bowl (along with several teammates), was busted and disciplined by OSU coach Mike Gundy. But on New Year’s Eve, Cox missed curfew again. "I went out, met up with my girlfriend at the time,” Cox said. "It was a bad choice. Couldn’t make it back on time.” Bad choice is putting it lightly. Besides letting down his teammates, who lost a hard-fought Cotton Bowl, Cox cost himself no telling how much money.