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September 24, 2005

McCoy's season ends

Harrisburg (Pa.) Bishop McDevitt running back LeSean McCoy, the nation's No. 1 tailback and the No. 4 player overall in the country, suffered a serious setback on Saturday in a rivalry game against Harrisburg, Pa. The 5-foot-11, 204-pounder broke his ankle in a pileup in the fourth quarter, ending his season and his quest for the Pennsylvania rushing record. Bishop McDevitt won the football game 38-24, coming back from a fourth quarter defecit, but it was a bittersweet win.

"The players showed heart and toughness and really came together," said Bishop McDevitt head coach Jeff Weachter. "Obviously losing Shady (McCoy's nickname) was tough and seeing him injured was tough, but the players responded and pulled out the win. LeSean is out for the season so we'll have to have some people step up even more."

Orginally it was reported that it was a compound fracture of either McCoy's leg or ankle.

"It's not a compound fracture," said Weachter. "But he did break his ankle. It'll take three months to be back at full strength, but the doctor told us that he won't lose a step and will recovery well and probably quickly. He said this was a better injury than a torn ACL as far as recovery is concerned, but obviously no injury is good."

McCoy was replaced by two different tailbacks in the game, junior Dave Onorato and sophomore Mike Jones. McDevitt also has a couple other promising sophomores in Cameron Artis and Aaron Johnson.

"We'll do it by committee for the most part," Weachter said. "We'll use a few guys to replace LeSean. Our game against Berwick is in two weeks, so we'd better find out who can be effective soon."

Another possibilty is City East fullback/linebacker Chris Henderson, another sophomore.

"He's 6-foot-2 and 240 pounds and runs a 4.5," said Weachter. "He can play some tailback, but this was his first game today because it took so long for approval for his eligibility. But he's going to be a good one."

Bishop McDevitt's two other offensive stars have also stepped up well. Aaron Berry, who plays wide receiver and cornerback, has been unstoppable and quarterback Jeremy Ricker has been very impressive.

"Jeremy is having a great year so far and we'll have to throw it even more now," said Weachter. "He has eight touchdown passes and only two interceptions and has easily outplayed the other two Pennsylvania quarterbacks against tougher competition."

Weachter is referring to Rivals100 signal-callers Zach Frazer (Notre Dame commit) and Pat Devlin (Miami commit) who have both struggled at times this year. Ricker is committed to Maryland.

As for McCoy, who rushed for 220 yards on just 10 carries last week, his quest for the Pennsylvania rushing record held by former Syracuse star and current Indianoplis Colts tailback James Mungro. Coming into the season, McCoy needed 2,682 yards to break the mark of 8,432 yards set by Mungro back in 1995 with East Stroudsburg. McCoy averaged 2,695 yards-per-season his first three years. Through his first three games McCoy had 694 yards on 49 carries.

"The odd thing Saturday was that Shady just wasn't himself before the game," said Weachter. "He wasn't his usual smiling and laughing self and he wasn't running well all day. I think he got too hyped up for this game, but it obviously didn't have anything to do with his injury. It's just bad luck."

McCoy, who lists a final seven of Southern Cal, Tennessee, Virginia Tech, Oklahoma, Penn State, Alabama and Miami, won't be changing anything about his official visit status.

"The plan is still to wait until after the season and schedule and take those," said Weachter. "He's still a big part of this team and we need him on the sidelines for each game. We're going to stick to our original plan."

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