(Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)
Code red. Code red.
Sam Bradford might go under the knife, after all.
Or he might go under center this Saturday against Baylor.
It's all still up in the air.
In a meeting with the media Tuesday afternoon, Bradford held open his options. They run, in his mind, the gamut.
What is most obvious for the competitive Heisman Trophy winning quarterback is that being out of the lineup is as painful to his psyche as the continual soreness is to his tormented right shoulder.
"The past three or four weeks have probably been the toughest three or four weeks I've had in a long time. Just the amount of preparation and the time spent preparing for the season, not being able to be out there with my teammates, especially in a game (Miami) like that—a big game on a national stage—that's really tough."
It's also obvious that the reflective Bradford is torn in what decision to make.
"Money's not everything. Obviously, I think some people, they think it is. But to me, there are a lot more things. I dreamed about coming to Oklahoma and playing football. We don't have a pro team in Oklahoma, so this was like my pro team. This was who I wanted to play for, and my experience here has been unbelievable. I felt like coming back (for this season) and adding to that experience would be a great thing for me."
It has been utterly amazing, for me, to watch and listen to media outlet after media outlet, reporter after reporter, speculate about Bradford while making assumption after assumption.
Needless to say, the trailer hasn't lived up to the teaser.
For the first three weeks, speculation was pretty bland. Surgery? No. Grade Two or Three separation? Unknown. So out two weeks? Well, yes, he'll miss the Tulsa game, but then there's a bye. So will he be back against Miami? Could be (which quickly turned into, "Probably").
The bye weekend is when it got interesting. On that Friday night, Bradford was seen boarding a plane at Dallas' Love Field Airport. Destination: Birmingham, AL. A Mississippi TV station reported Bradford was on his way to Alabama to visit with renowned shoulder surgeon and specialist Dr. James Andrews.
By Saturday morning, ESPN reported: "Bradford in Alabama seeking clearance to play against Miami." Oh, snap. ESPN reported it. So it must be true.
Unless ESPN had a hidden microphone stuck up...well, forget that image (be satisfied that ESPN is constantly trying to stick themselves up your...well, forget that image, too).
There is one, and only one, fact that can be concluded from Bradford's trip to Alabama: That he wasconsulting with Dr. Andrews. Unless Bradford or Dr. Andrews told you differently, it's all scuttlebutt. If someone other than Bradford or Dr. Andrews told you any more than that, it's a violation of HIPPA confidentiality laws. The guilty mouthpiece could be sued for more money than a doctor's malpractice premium.
Groupthink struck again and went haywire every time, until Bradford stepped to the microphone yesterday to grant the media masses some unlabored erudition.
Sure, Head Coach Bob Stoops could have done what Bradford did yesterday, but his every move and word were being spied upon. Why would he give the enemies, Miami and Big 12 opponents, any inside information?
Media outlets and reporters are always entitled to an opinion. But not to their own version of the truth.
For more info:
Bradford at Crossroads in His Young Life
Did You Earn Your Ph.D in Coaching the Oklahoma Sooners?
How to "Fix" the Sooners
Whatever Bradford Decides, Landry Jones is QB of the Future
Bob Stoops, the Bestselling Mystery Novelist