MIAMI GARDENS, Florida — Marquise Brown ran routes and caught passes at Wednesday’s practice.
But the status of Oklahoma’s top receiver for Saturday’s Orange Bowl remained unclear, until he met reporters at media day the following afternoon.
Brown, who was injured Dec. 1 in the Big 12 championship, anticipates he’ll play against No. 1 Alabama.
“If I’m breathing, I’m playing,” he said.
Brown’s injury is to his left foot. He suffered an ankle injury on the same leg earlier this season but progressed to the point where he caught 11 passes for 243 yards and two TDs against West Virginia.
After the conference title game, though, he missed several practices.
“It’s getting better. I’m doing the best I can with treatment and everything,” Brown said. “I’m just trying to get close to 100 percent Saturday. It’s still too early to tell how close I would be, but I’m anticipating playing and will try my best to be out there.”
• Fever?: OU quarterback Kyler Murray got the full Baker Mayfield treatment at Orange Bowl media day, getting plenty of questions about his health after missing a media availability earlier in the week.
Murray told an OU spokesman he wasn’t feeling well Wednesday, but his condition has improved. He admitted the month-long trek around the country for awards shows and the holidays took a toll.
“I was surprised I made it this long, flying, Oklahoma, Atlanta, New York, back home, going to Dallas, all this stuff,” Murray said. “I actually hadn’t felt anything up until this point. I think for me, just trying to just be as healthy as possible come Saturday.”
Does he have a fever?
“Fever?” Murray asked back. “I don’t know. I just — like I said, I felt really bad. I don’t remember the last time I had a fever.”
But he’ll be fine to play Saturday?
“Yes,” he said.
Mayfield received that type of interrogation last year upon swooping into Rose Bowl media day unexpectedly after being ill the entire week.
• No talk yet: Alabama co-defensive coordinator Pete Golding has been listed as a candidate for OU’s vacant defensive coordinator position, but he said there hasn’t been any talk between the two parties yet.
“It’s interesting, yeah. I have not. No communication with Oklahoma,” Golding said. “So excited about playing those guys. They’ve got a great football team. We’ll focus on the task at hand, try to get our guys prepared for Saturday.”
Golding added that his agent, Jimmy Sexton, handles hiring matters.
• Foggy few days: OU defensive line coach Calvin Thibodeaux, who is considered by some as a strong candidate to return next season despite defensive staff changes, said the days after Mike Stoops’ firing were not easy.
The Sooners were just stable enough to reach the CFP.
“It was foggy. I’m not going to sit here and lie to you. We knew we had to keep the thing rolling,” Thibodeaux said. “Coach Riley was awesome. The first couple of days were kind of stale. Once we got back on that practice field, I think it was a bye week, and we got to practicing and the guys got a chance to do what they love, we got this thing back rolling.
“At the end of the day, they got a chance to get back on that field and redeem themselves. Losing to Texas on top of losing your defensive coordinator, it was like ‘whoa,’ but they responded the right way.”