Bradford says he may play Saturday or might not play at all

Thursday, May 26th 2011, 1:17 pm
By: News 9

Originally Published: Oct 6, 2009 9:45 PM CDT

Today’s Bob Stoops Media session was the best in a long, long time. Stoops was good. OC Kevin Wilson was deliberate and not defensive when answering questions about his play-calling in the Miami loss. But it was the best in a long time because Sam Bradford attended. 

Predictably, the Heisman winner handled sensitive and difficult questions with aplomb. Stoops had tired of having to answer questions about the health status of Bradford and when he might return. He said in essence that he’s answered the questions; Wilson has answered the questions, so it’s Sam’s turn. Knowing Stoops, he would never throw one of his players into the den of thieves known as the Fourth Estate if he didn’t think his lad could handle himself.

 Predictably, the Heisman winner handled 11 minutes of sensitive and difficult questions with aplomb. Bradford should be the poster boy/man for anyone wanting to know how to handle a Q and A. Looks you straight in the eye and listens to the person asking the question. Looks the person back in the eye and with respect but firmness when appropriate, articulates his answers in a concise fashion.

 Heretofore, his press conferences have been pretty easy. Since he burst upon the national scene about one year ago right now, the toughest questions dealt with what he could shoot at Oak Tree, where he keeps his Heisman, and does he like Tiger Woods. 

Today was different. It was a rare chance to get the answers you want to know.  When will you return?  Or, will you return?  

 Unfathomably, some in our Estate either didn’t understand the import of his direct answer.  Ignorance, or agenda, that question if for another day.  


 Here’s part of the Q and A with Bradford:  

So there is no chance that you won't come back?  You definitely are going to play? 
Um, I don't know if I can give you a definite answer. But right now, I do feel like yes, I will be back at some point.

So you've been cleared, but you can't commit to playing?
Uh, correct. Because it's still a process of seeing how it reacts to a full game week of preparation, the amount of throws that it takes to prepare for a game.

Everybody talks about you throwing, but how much concern is there about you taking a hit?
I really don't think there's much concern with me taking a hit. From everything that I've received from the doctors, it's just like taking any other hit. I mean, it can't do much more damage. The odds of me hurting it now are just like the odds of me hurt it before anything happened to it.

Is there a chance you might have to eventually have surgery? 
Yes, that is still a possibility.

Play this year and have it in the offseason? 

Is there any way you wouldn't have to have it?
Uh, yeah. Like I said, it's just all a matter of how my arm reacts to making all the throws that I have, you know, to the stress that going through a season puts on it.

Is that one of the reasons you definitely can't commit to playing, because it might mean surgery earlier so you can be ready earlier?
Exactly. I mean, all the doctors I've talked to, it's all a matter of how my arm reacts. Until I get out there, until I practice, until I make all the throws, until I play in a game, I'm not gonna know. And no one's gonna know.

One of the major reasons you came back was to win a national championship. That's gone now. So any objective Sooner fan would understand if you said, 'I'm not gonna play any more this year.’  So why come back?  You've won Big 12 titles.
Yeah but, you say the national championship's out of the picture, but what happens if we win nine straight games and we win the Big 12?  You know, there's still a possibility. To win another Big 12 championship and become the first team to win four straight Big 12 championships, I mean, I still think there's a lot in front of this team. It'd be extremely selfish for me to say, 'Oh, the possibility of a national championship is slim now, so why come back?’  I've spent so many hours with these guys and for me to say or even think about something like that is just extremely selfish.

What's the likelihood of playing this weekend, reacting to that and then having to sit out for an extended?

Um, I don't know. I haven't gone through this before. I haven't played in a game yet. I can't tell you how it's gonna react. I just really can't answer that question.


In sum, Sam: has been cleared to play, but doesn’t know if he will and won’t know till the arm is tested this week to see if he can make all the throws and to see if there is much pain?taking a hit is not a concern?he’s still enthralled by the thought of winning nine straight and winning a fourth straight the Big 12 title and saying it’s too early to say a two-loss team is out of the national title hunt...he can’t turn his back on his teammates and not play if he is physically capable?surgery is still an option?it could come soon, after the season or not at all. 

And the answers to the two biggest questions: Bradford says he doesn’t know if he’ll play this weekend. Most interesting to me, he can not guarantee the he will even return this season.  

In our business, that’s known as burying the lead. If Bradford doesn’t return, the only thing buried will be the team he rejected $40 million dollars to contend for a national championship. Remember the Bulls without Jordan?


Keep in touch?.db