Injury could shuffle Vandy QB deck
Posted: Wednesday, November 12, 2008 5:52 pm
NASHVILLE (AP) — Vanderbilt coach Bobby Johnson doesn’t have a plan yet for his quarterbacks Saturday night at Kentucky.
He made it clear that whether Mackenzi Adams makes his fourth consecutive start or Chris Nickson makes his first start in more than a month, the plan will not change for the Commodores (5-4, 3-3).
“I think both of them have the same kind of skill set, so we’re not going to have a different game plan for either one of them,” Johnson said Monday. “Both of them should be able to play and should be able to master the game plan.”
The uncertainty this week revolves around a hip pointer injury Adams sustained late in the first half of last weekend’s 42-14 loss to then-No. 4 Florida. Nickson came on for the final play of the second quarter, finished the game and directed the Commodores’ only two scoring drives of 81 and 87 yards.
“Hip pointers are unpredictable and painful,” Johnson said about the injury. “And until you get to starting to run full speed or you get hit there, you just don’t know how it’s going to react.”
Johnson does expect Adams to be able to practice beginning Tuesday and said coaches will evaluate his progress throughout the week.
He did not rule out the possibility that both Adams and Nickson might play at Kentucky (7-3, 2-4).
“Very possibly, we could play both of them,” Johnson said. “ We’re looking at this week and this week only, and trying to get everyone ready not just Chris and not just Mac. We look at every position out there.”
Before he was hurt, Adams completed five of eight passes for 47 yards with one interception against Florida.
Nickson was 7-for-14 for 67 yards and two touchdowns. Nickson also was the Commodores’ second-leading rusher with 39 yards on 10 attempts.
“(Adams) just took himself out or told the trainers that something was ailing him,” Nickson said Saturday night. “I admire him for what he did. I’ve done it before. It’s something that shows his character and how much he wanted the team to win, to put aside all the things.”
Nickson was 5-1 as a starter before an injury to his throwing shoulder limited his production. Adams came off the bench and threw two touchdown passes in a 14-13 victory over Auburn on Oct. 4 and was named the starter the following week.