Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Shipleys vs. the McCoys...

In case you have never seen a University of Texas game on television. UT quarterback Colt McCoy's roommate is teammate Jordan Shipley. The announcers seem to make it a point to drill that into your head ad nauseum! What they don't always mention is that both of their dads were also college roommates and that their little brothers are both pretty darn good players too. McCoy's younger brother, Case, is already committed to Texas.
Friday night, I went to Brownwood to cover the game between Brownwood and Graham High Schools. Since it was was Colt's dad and brother coaching/playing for Graham and Shipley's dad and brother coaching/playing for Brownwood the game was already getting statewide attention. Graham was the #6 ranked team in the state and Brownwood was having a much better season this year than last now that they have a coach that can run a defense.
Games like this with all the hoopla and hype surrounding it usually turn out to be duds. This game was certainly the exception to the rule! Brownwood was up 14-0 at the half. And, Brownwood wide receiver Jaxon Shipley pretty much took the game into his own hands and was on a mission to win it almost by himself. On offense, he had 8 catches for 245 yards and two TD's. He also set up Brownwood's other two touchdowns with some long receptions inside the red zone. On defense, he pretty much single-handedly shut down Graham's top receiver for the whole first half.
But, Graham is the type of quick-strike team that can make that up in a hurry. Well, they took their sweet time coming back but, eventually closed the gap. Graham was down 28-14 with less than 5 minutes left in the game. First McCoy threw a 40-yard touchdown pass to pull within 7. Then with 2:21 left in the game and no timeouts McCoy put together 77-yard touchdown drive. Which he pretty much put the team on his back and won the game.
The funny part was I was talking to a friend on the sideline early in the game and said "Case just doesn't seem to have the wheels that his brother does." I ate my words on that one during the final drive when McCoy scrambled away from a defender on 4th-and-long and ran 22 yards for the 1st down capping it off by leaping over a Brownwood defender to go out of bounds and stop the clock. I don't mind eating my words, however, when at least I'm in the right place to get the shot, and I got a nice sequence of McCoy's spectacular play. Which, that of course, is much more important!
So, here we are at the end of the game and Graham throws a pass in the middle of the field at the 17-yard line and the clock is running. They get up to the line with just enough time to spike it and run one final play. McCoy then does a great job of throwing a nice 17-yard bullet to his receiver in the end zone for a touchdown with only 2 seconds left on the clock! All Graham needs to do is kick the PAT and they go to overtime. Brownwood, I guess, didn't want to play overtime since they blocked the kick and won the game 28-27.
Honestly I was thinking Brownwood just wouldn't have the talent to win the game. However, after watching Jaxon Shipley make some pretty damn amazing catches going up and pulling down balls in double and triple coverage, this team is going to make some noise in the playoffs. But then watching McCoy put the team on his back and do everything he had to do to tie the game, I don't think Graham will be that far behind. Wow! This was a helluva game. These games almost never live up to the hype. This one did and then some.



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