CB Perrish Cox: ‘I tell them it was a stupid mistake’

INDIANAPOLIS — Perrish Cox of Oklahoma State is one of the top-rated cornerbacks in the upcoming NFL draft.

Perrish Cox talks frankly with reporters about his behavior while a player at Oklahoma State.
Perrish Cox talks frankly with reporters about his behavior while a player at Oklahoma State.

However, he raised concerns about his maturity when he was suspended for the Cotton Bowl for missing curfew — twice. Sporting News‘ Clifton Brown and other reporters spoke with Cox at the NFL Scouting Combine.

Q: How often have NFL coaches, scouts and general managers asked about the suspension?
A: That’s one of the main things they harass me with. It’s kind of tough. I kind of knew that was going to happen.

Q: Are you able to ease their concerns?
A: I tell them straight up it was my fault. I take all the blame for it. Coach (Mike Gundy) did what he had to do. He wanted to suspend me for the game. I had to accept it.

Q: Did you actually get busted twice for missing curfew at the Cotton Bowl?
A: I did. I think that’s why our head coach made the decision he had to make. First time, me and a few other guys on the team, we decided to go out, didn’t have practice the next day. We came in after curfew. Got caught. Happened again on New Year’s Eve. I went out again and got caught on curfew.

Q: What did you do on New Year’s Eve?
A: I went out, met up with my girlfriend at the time. It was a bad choice. Couldn’t make it back on time.

Q: How do you convince coaches and G.M.s that you won’t be a problem in the NFL?
A: I tell them it was a stupid mistake. I learned from it; it won’t happen again. I don’t want to get suspended again, get harassed like I’ve been getting harassed.

Q: How have the NFL coaches and personnel men responded?
A: Half of them give me a hard time about it. I listen to what they have to say, because I know they aren’t doing anything but telling me right. There won’t be a next time.

Q: Does being asked about it so often make you mad?
A: I don’t get angry at all; I’ve got to accept the punishment. I can live with it.

Q: Did you play much bump-and-run coverage in college?
A: It depended on the play-call. We mixed it up a lot, playing man coverage, cover-four (zone).

Q: Does your ability to play special teams separate you from other cornerbacks?
A: You could say that. These days, special teams win games for you.

Q: What’s the secret to your success as a return man?
A: My team — other 10 guys around me. It all starts with them. Without them, it wouldn’t have happened.

Q: Where do you think you’ll be drafted?
A: I really don’t know.

Q: What was it like practicing against Dez Bryant, the No. 1 wide receiver prospect, every day at Oklahoma State?
A: It was spectacular. I can’t really explain it. He is the best receiver I ever picked on since I’ve been in college football, hands down.

Q: A large group of cornerbacks have a chance to be first- or second-round picks. What separates you from them?
A: Hopefully, special teams. Hopefully, that suspension thing doesn’t take away anything.

INDIANAPOLIS — Perrish Cox of Oklahoma State is one of the top-rated cornerbacks in the upcoming NFL draft.

Perrish Cox talks frankly with reporters about his behavior while a player at Oklahoma State.
Perrish Cox talks frankly with reporters about his behavior while a player at Oklahoma State.

However, he raised concerns about his maturity when he was suspended for the Cotton Bowl for missing curfew — twice. Sporting News‘ Clifton Brown and other reporters spoke with Cox at the NFL Scouting Combine.

Q: How often have NFL coaches, scouts and general managers asked about the suspension?
A: That’s one of the main things they harass me with. It’s kind of tough. I kind of knew that was going to happen.

Q: Are you able to ease their concerns?
A: I tell them straight up it was my fault. I take all the blame for it. Coach (Mike Gundy) did what he had to do. He wanted to suspend me for the game. I had to accept it.

Q: Did you actually get busted twice for missing curfew at the Cotton Bowl?
A: I did. I think that’s why our head coach made the decision he had to make. First time, me and a few other guys on the team, we decided to go out, didn’t have practice the next day. We came in after curfew. Got caught. Happened again on New Year’s Eve. I went out again and got caught on curfew.

Q: What did you do on New Year’s Eve?
A: I went out, met up with my girlfriend at the time. It was a bad choice. Couldn’t make it back on time.

Q: How do you convince coaches and G.M.s that you won’t be a problem in the NFL?
A: I tell them it was a stupid mistake. I learned from it; it won’t happen again. I don’t want to get suspended again, get harassed like I’ve been getting harassed.

Q: How have the NFL coaches and personnel men responded?
A: Half of them give me a hard time about it. I listen to what they have to say, because I know they aren’t doing anything but telling me right. There won’t be a next time.

Q: Does being asked about it so often make you mad?
A: I don’t get angry at all; I’ve got to accept the punishment. I can live with it.

Q: Did you play much bump-and-run coverage in college?
A: It depended on the play-call. We mixed it up a lot, playing man coverage, cover-four (zone).

Q: Does your ability to play special teams separate you from other cornerbacks?
A: You could say that. These days, special teams win games for you.

Q: What’s the secret to your success as a return man?
A: My team — other 10 guys around me. It all starts with them. Without them, it wouldn’t have happened.

Q: Where do you think you’ll be drafted?
A: I really don’t know.

Q: What was it like practicing against Dez Bryant, the No. 1 wide receiver prospect, every day at Oklahoma State?
A: It was spectacular. I can’t really explain it. He is the best receiver I ever picked on since I’ve been in college football, hands down.

Q: A large group of cornerbacks have a chance to be first- or second-round picks. What separates you from them?
A: Hopefully, special teams. Hopefully, that suspension thing doesn’t take away anything.

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