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McCutchen would like to do it all over again
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Senior wide receiver Reggie McCutchen is sad to see his career come to a close, despite experiencing an up-and-down season in ’06. He has 23 receptions for 362 yards, but 191 of those came against Elon on Oct. 14. McCutchen also lost his best friend on the team, Teddy Craft, to a motorcycle accident over the summer. - photo by MICHELLE BOAEN/staff
Reggie McCutchen remembers when he thought the game of football, as he put it, “sucked.”
    Now, with his career dwindling to a close the Georgia Southern senior wide receiver would like to do it all over. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way.
    However, McCutchen is determined to make the most of what time he has remaining with the struggling Eagles (3-5, 2-3), who need victories in their final three games to avoid a losing season in Coach Brian VanGorder’s first year.
    Georgia Southern and McCutchen will be out to snap a two game losing streak Saturday when they host Wofford (4-4, 3-2) in a Southern Conference game. Kickoff at Paulson Stadium is noon, and the game will be televised by CSS.
    McCutchen transferred to Georgia Southern three years ago from the University of Florida, where he was on a track scholarship. He played football and ran track at Stephenson High School.
    “I started at quarterback in the ninth and 10th grade,” said McCutchen. “When I was a junior the coach moved me to defense to play in the secondary. I didn’t like it…it sucked…that’s when I started concentrating on track.”
    It wasn’t that McCutchen was a bad quarterback. With his speed and athletic ability he was a threat every time he touched the ball. It’s just that, as he readily admitted, the up and coming sophomore who replaced him wasn’t bad, either.
    “Reggie Ball was the guy who replaced me,” said McCuthen, pausing to let a grin crease his face. “I understand why they switched me. He’s pretty good.”
    Ball, of course, now plays quarterback for Georgia Tech where he has started for four years.
    This has been a difficult and frustrating season for McCutchen, who has 23 catches for 362 yards, an average of 15.7 per catch. He has yet to score a touchdown after getting four last year on 13 catches for 317 yards.
    The most difficult part of the season occurred in July when fellow wide receiver Teddy Craft was killed in a motorcycle accident. The two were extremely close and Craft spent a lot of time mentoring McCutchen in the intricacies of being an accomplished receiver.
    The two spent a lot of time together in the spring and summer, and were looking forward to finally being able to display their ability in VanGorder’s multiple offense after serving essentially as blockers in the Eagles’ triple option offense.
    “The beginning of the season was a very emotional time for me,” said McCutchen. “Teddy was by far my best friend on the team. We took classes together this summer, and we were looking forward to the season. We were excited about the new offense. When he died it hit me hard.
    “Now, it’s very disappointing because of our record,” said McCutchen. “We had high expectations going into this season.”
    McCutchen has caught at least one pass in every game this season, and he had a game for the ages against Elon, catching seven passes for a school record 191 yards in Georgia Southern’s 28-21 victory.
    “The biggest thing I’m striving for is consistency,” said McCutchen. “I would like to get away from the ups and downs. You have a great game and then the next week (Appalachian State) you come back with one catch for three yards. That’s kind of the way our season has gone.
    “Every once in a while I get frustrated,” McCutchen said, “but then I’ve got to realize why I’m here. I’ll graduate next spring with a degree in finance, and that’s more important than anything else. I’ve already got one job offer, but I’m going to continue to look.”
    Like his fellow seniors McCutchen wants to go out a winner, and that means starting with a victory over the Terriers, a team which has beaten Southern three of the last four years.
    “It’s important for us to play hard and stay focused,” said McCutchen. “I want to win for Coach VanGorder. I want to help lay the foundation for him and the program he’s building here.
    “And, I especially want to beat Furman,” said McCutchen. “We beat them last year when they were No. 1. I would like to win up there and maybe knock them out of the playoffs.”