McCoy can do Young repeat

McCoy can do Young repeat

December 23rd, 2009 by The Decatur Daily in Local Regional News

By Michael Casagrande, sports@timesfreepress.com

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- The tired look on Colt McCoy's face answered the repetitive questions 11 days ago in New York.

Just minutes after he fell painfully short of winning the Heisman Trophy for the second straight year, reporters in New York wouldn't let it go. Making the connection between his situation and that of another Texas quarterback a few years earlier was not his main concern.

In 2005, the Longhorns' Vince Young lost the Heisman to a running back whom he would face in a game to decide the national championship. Alabama's Mark Ingram is the Reggie Bush of 2009, and the game will be played on the same turf in the Rose Bowl.

Young got his revenge with an upset win capped by his quarterback scramble, but McCoy wasn't biting on the obvious comparisons. Monday he emphasized that he isn't dwelling on losing out on the Heisman twice.

"I'm completely over that," McCoy said. "I think I was probably more disappointed last year than I am this year, because I still have so much left to play for."

He fell 124 points short of Oklahoma's Sam Bradford in the 2008 Heisman balloting before playing in the Fiesta Bowl.

This year, that extra motivation comes from the prospect of ending his college career with a national championship when his second-ranked Longhorns meet No. 1 Alabama in the BCS title game Jan. 7.

Coming out of tiny Jim Ned High School in rural Texas, McCoy wasn't the most likely candidate for such success as a quarterback in the powerful Big 12. He even heard doubts from people in his hometown of Tuscola, Texas, questioning whether his game would translate into big-time college football.

But as a four-year starter he has a 45-7 record with the lone defeat the past two seasons coming on a last-second touchdown at Texas Tech last fall. He's thrown for 13,244 yards while completing 70.3 percent of his 1,643 passes to fall one-tenth of a percentage point below the NCAA record.

McCoy holds nearly every school passing record and won countless national awards but has yet to repeat what he witnessed Young do from the Rose Bowl sideline in the final game of his redshirt season.

McCoy respects the leadership qualities he sees in Young, now the starter with the Tennessee Titans.

"I'm sure (Young) will call me and tell me to enjoy it and have fun," McCoy said. "I can already tell you what he's going to say. But, you know, he was really instrumental for me in my freshman year and for the past four years that I've played. Usually whatever he tells me, I take to heart and listen to. So he may give me some cool stuff."

Being on the award circuit with Ingram two weeks ago gave the two an opportunity to get to know each other before heading to Pasadena for the serious business.

If there is any animosity, it didn't come out in New York.

"We were just enjoying each other," Ingram said. "The most we talked about the game is that it really hasn't hit us that we're playing for a national championship. But everybody was just real cool and laid back. You don't want to talk about football at the time. ... We were just getting to know each other, enjoying it, joking around and having a good time."

"Three Suhs" for Tide

Texas coach Mack Brown talked Monday in Austin about the balance of the Alabama defensive line. In a reference to Nebraska's Ndamukong Suh, who got 4 1/2 sacks against Texas in the Big 12 championship game, Brown said his coaches were "not able to sleep" while analyzing the Tide linemen.

"They've got three Suhs up front," Brown said. "That's the problem. Everywhere you look, they've been knocking people down. We've been afraid to show it to our kids."