McCoy, Blalock To Start Against Aggies

QB Colt McCoy and RG Justin Blalock will start against Texas A&M Friday, Texas coach Mack Brown announced Monday.

Both exited the Nov. 11 game at Kansas State and did not return. McCoy returns to practice for the first time after spending last week rehabbing a pinched nerve in his neck.

"I’m excited to be back in practice this week to see how it feels and to see how it goes," McCoy said. "I worked really hard last week in the training room to get myself back and ready and to get my strength back."

McCoy would not disclose if he was 100 percent, but mentioned that he talked to New England Patriots TE David Thomas this week after the former Longhorn suffered a similar injury in training camp.

"It took him 10 days to get back," McCoy said, nine days after his stinger on the opening drive at Manhattan, Kansas. "It’s just a matter of who it is and how bad it is. You can’t really treat it. You can do exercises to help it along, but it’s just a waiting game. I had a good doctor’s appointment (Sunday) and I’m ready to get outside and practice."

Relegated to the sideline against K-State was "harder than you can imagine," McCoy said. "I had them just how I liked them on that first drive. I felt like we were going to have a really good offensive night. I felt like Jevan (Snead) did a great job stepping in there like that. It was really frustrating to sit on the sidelines and watch because you want to be out there performing and helping your teammates."

Justin Blalock left the Kansas State game with a second-half knee injury but is expected to notch his 50th collegiate start against the Aggies. It would extend the current NCAA record and break the Longhorn record, held by All-American Dan Neil (1993-96).

"It was a little nick," Blalock quipped. "Somebody just fell on the back of my leg. As soon as I got up, I could walk. Well, I don’t know if I’d call it walking. I got off the field on my own power."

There remains some question regarding Blalock’s and McCoy’s relative effectiveness against the upset-minded Aggies.

"I couldn’t put a number on it," Blalock said, "but I feel a lot better."

Other than rehab, the extent of McCoy’s participation in practice during the bye week was limited to throwing.

"It feels good," he concluded. "I’m ready to be out there and practice again with my teammates and get our game plan."

Following Monday’s workout, Longhorn players and coaches are slated to attend the annual Hex Rally at 8:00 p.m. on the UT campus.

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