Wearing a Redskins cap and a burnt orange shirt, Colt McCoy accounted for all of his football loyalties at his annual football camp.
McCoy was sweating it out Tuesday alongside the hundreds of grade-school football players racing around Westlake’s Chaparral Stadium. The camp, in its seventh year, is one of McCoy’s last vestiges of summer before training camp begins.
McCoy, who turns 30 this fall, is also entering the seventh year of his NFL career. He’s still excited about playing in Washington and has few regrets about re-signing with the team in March.
“Lots of positive things going on there,” said McCoy, who is projected to be Kirk Cousins’ backup. “(I) feel comfortable within the system that if I’m called upon to play, I’ll do well.”
McCoy also has high hopes for the Longhorns this season under third-year coach Charlie Strong.
“The key for us this year will be whether we can win some games early,” McCoy said. “If we can win some games early, we’ve got a chance to create some momentum and have a good season. I think we’ll be able to tell after the first couple of games.”
McCoy spoke extensively about freshman quarterback Shane Buechele, but quickly added a caveat — “if he’s the guy.” Some Texas fans hope Buechele can make the same impact McCoy did as a redshirt freshman in 2006, the year after the Longhorns won the national title.
There are some major differences, though. McCoy had a year under his belt to watch Vince Young go undefeated in 2005. Buechele is a true freshman who graduated high school last December so he could enroll early and go through spring practice.
McCoy also had the benefit of a seasoned offensive line. This year’s offensive line at Texas will be younger and far more inexperienced by comparison.
If anything, McCoy said going to a spread offense, like the kind new offensive coordinator Sterlin Gilbert has in mind, could benefit a quarterback with lesser experience.
“I can’t honestly say I’ve seen enough (of Buechele) to make comparisons,” McCoy said. “Sometimes it’s hard when guys get compared to someone else who’s played or done anything, so I really don’t want to put that burden on Shane.
“I want Shane to go out there and be himself, be who he is and show all of us what he’s capable of — if he’s the guy. I don’t really know who’s going to play, but I know from reports out of there that he had a really nice spring. If it turns into wins, I’m all about it.”
Asked about Strong, McCoy circled back to his theme about the importance of early-season victories. Texas opens the year hosting Notre Dame, which could be a preseason top-10 pick, on Sept. 4.
“I know that coach Strong has done a great job of bringing in the guys he wants in, creating some discipline in there,” McCoy said. “I just think we need guys in there that know how to win. That’s why I think it’s so important for the team to win a few games early, to remember what it feels like, to beat a good team like Notre Dame when they come to town.
“I think we’ve been so up and down, we haven’t created that atmosphere like we should,” he added. “If we can establish that early, then all the naysayers will eventually be quiet.”
Contact Brian Davis at 512-445-3957. Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
News on Bevo Beat is free and unlimited. Access to the rest of Hookem.com is included with an Austin American-Statesman subscription in addition to Statesman.com and the ePaper edition. Subscribe today at statesman.com/subscribe.