MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

OU

December 30, 2013

Sugar Bowl notepad

Bama QB almost a Sooner

Alabama quarterback A.J. McCarron led his team to national championships in 2011 and 2012. If not for Auburn’s field goal return for a touchdown Nov. 30, he might be going for three straight.

In the case of what-ifs, he might have also been Oklahoma’s quarterback if the recruiting process had gone a tad differently.

McCarron said Sunday he was set to commit to the Sooners before the Mobile, Ala., native had an epiphany. He said he wasn’t an Alabama fan growing up.

“I like Sam Bradford. I liked watching him play and the offense they ran when he was there,” he said. “The night before I verbally committed to Alabama, I was going to commit to Oklahoma. I talked to my parents and prayed about it when I went to bed that night. Woke up the next morning and chose to go to Alabama. I felt that it was best for my situation and my family.”

McCarron’s parents were the big Crimson Tide fans in his family. Ultimately that spurred his decision.

“Every family in Alabama … the first thing is, when they have a boy, is that he’s going to be a quarterback at Alabama. It’s always the thought process behind every kid in the state of Alabama,” he said. “My dad said that a long time ago in joking around … my parents kind of live their dreams through me and that’s the cool part about the process. That’s what I’m thankful about.”

No pecking order

OU, typically, tries to match cornerback Aaron Colvin against and an opponent’s best wide receiver. Probably won’t happen Thursday because the Crimson Tide doesn’t have a defined No. 1 receiver. Amari Cooper, Kevin Norwood and Christion Jones all have 36 receptions this season. Cooper leads the team with 615 receiving yards. Norwood sets the pace with a team-leading seven touchdown receptions.

“They have three or four receivers that can play. The coaches have definitely preached about that. Everybody has to be on their Ps and Qs at all times,” Colvin said.

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