McCoy finds friend in former QB Print
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Wednesday, 17 September 2008 21:11
NCAAF Headline News

 AUSTIN (AP) -Major Applewhite insists he's the Texas running backs coach, not the quarterbacks coach. It says so right on his job description.
Yet the former record-setting Texas QB is routinely peppered with questions about tutoring Colt McCoy, how he helps him and what advice he offers. It just comes with the territory when you're one of the most beloved Texas players in the last decade.
``Coach (Greg) Davis teaches Colt McCoy,'' Applewhite said of the Longhorns' offensive coordinator, ``and he's a great teacher.''
Applewhite set several UT passing records from 1998-2001 and his return to the Longhorns' program was treated with the kind of fanfare usually reserved for head coaches.
But, again, Applewhite says he's the running backs coach and his job is to coax along a running attack still waiting for Vondell McGee, Fozzy Whittaker or Chris Ogbannaya to emerge as the full-time starter.
ps-and-downs of playing quarterback and the complexities of Davis' offense, it's Applewhite, who also played for Davis and head coach Mack Brown.
``I'd be dumb not to use him as a resource,'' McCoy said as the No. 7 Longhorns (2-0) prepare for Saturday night's game against Rice (2-1). ``When you play quarterback at the University of Texas, it's almost like a fraternity.''
Applewhite has taught McCoy the value of using his running backs as receivers. When Applewhite was playing, he put up big numbers throwing outlet passes to Ricky Williams and Hodges Mitchell.
``What he's brought to me is the importance of the backs. If nobody's down field, why are you going to force the ball somewhere? Maybe the guy will make a great play, maybe you'll make a great throw, but you've got the back sitting there wide open,'' McCoy said.
McCoy's numbers after two games - seven touchdowns against one interception - show that Applewhite's advice is working. Ogbannaya and McGee have 80 yards receiving and a touchdown. McCoy had three touchdowns and four interceptions in the first two games last season.
``My job is just when Colt leans on something, he wants to know something - How'd you handle this? How'd you do that? I'll help him in those areas,'' Applewhite said. ``When you're the quarterback at Texas you have a thousand different coaches. I understand that about Colt.''
plewhite's records. At 6,040 career passing yards, McCoy has almost two full seasons to chase Applewhite's mark of 8,353. Two more TD passes will tie Applewhite's record of 60.
``We give each other a hard time,'' McCoy said.
One thing Applewhite could never have hoped to match was McCoy's ability to run. Applewhite was anything but athletic while McCoy is Texas' leading rusher after two games, including a 103-yard effort in a 52-10 win over Florida Atlantic.
Applewhite would like that kind of production out his running backs.
McGee had 63 yards against Florida Atlantic and Whittaker ran for 72 yards in a 42-13 win two weeks ago at Texas-El Paso. After the UTEP game, Davis said he wasn't happy with the running game.
``Historically ... we've started a little slow in the run game and we've ended up being pretty proficient. Hopefully, that will be the same again,'' Davis said.
Applewhite said he won't worry about numbers, but how well the backs protect the ball against turnovers, pass protect for McCoy and grind out the key yards when needed.
``We don't worry about stats,'' Applewhite said. ``It's about wins and losses.''
Perfect so far.
 

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