It happened suddenly, and it nearly ended Brodrick Yancy’s football career.
The Manatee High alum missed a block, so he tried making amends on the play.
What transpired was Yancy bumping into his teammate on an accidental collision when he turned to complete his blocking assignment.
“I went into shock,” Yancy said. “My neck was just hurting. I couldn’t really tell what was going on at the moment.”
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Yancy, a wide receiver for Temple who is playing in the Military Bowl against Wake Forest on Tuesday, suffered the neck injury in September 2015 at Cincinnati on a kickoff return as teammate Jahad Thomas was tackled with a scrum of players.
Yancy, who was stretchered off the field, said it was the first time he’s experienced an injury like that.
“I was hoping I was going to be alright, and that my neck wasn’t broken or anything,” Yancy said.
It wasn’t, and after returning to Philadelphia, where Temple University is located, Yancy underwent laser treatment for his neck. A stimulation machine and icing were also utilized in his neck treatment.
The diagnosis was that it wasn’t as severe as originally thought.
“I was happy that I got the chance to come back and play,” Yancy said.
He returned after a couple weeks but decided to take a redshirt to make sure he was 100 percent healthy moving forward.
It wasn’t the first time Yancy has seen a devastating injury alter things on the field.
In his senior season at Manatee High, Yancy was the program’s backup quarterback to Josh Meyer.
A second round Class 8A playoff game at Fort Pierce Central was the site.
Meyer dislocated his shoulder, which meant Yancy was forced to move from wide receiver to quarterback.
The Hurricanes lost 17-15, but keeping it close was a testament to Yancy’s athleticism in running the offense without any prep time.
“It’s special when a kid can come in like that, not really coached at the position, and can come in poised enough to take the environment with what’s going on, what’s at stake ... and do really well,” Manatee assistant Chad Choate said. “He even threw the ball and had some big completions. I think he hit one for a 40-yard gain. He scrambled around, found a receiver and he was special.”
Yancy’s senior season at Manatee didn’t yield a state title, but that was just a prelude to this season with the Owls.
“I feel like I was in a college program being at Manatee,” Yancy said. “I feel like the playbook set me up in the right ways.”
He’s caught 24 passes for 284 yards and two touchdowns in 11 games, though he didn’t play in the AAC title game against Navy due to an ankle injury.
The Owls claimed their first AAC championship to bump themselves into the Top 25 rankings and a date with Wake Forest in Tuesday’s Military Bowl in Annapolis, Md.
“It’s awesome to be a part of something like this,” Yancy said. “It’s hard to win games in college football. So I mean, to win a championship, win seven games back to back, it’s priceless.”
Who: Temple vs. Wake Forest
What: Military Bowl
When: Tuesday, 3:30 p.m.
Where: Navy-Marine Corps. Stadium, Annapolis (Md.)