Michigan State’s Plane Ruled Down In Madison?

Here’s multiple images from the ESPN telecast of the last play of the Wisconsin-Michigan State game on Saturday night:

Closeup photo of Michigan State goal line play against Wisconsin to end the game

(Camera Behind Goal Line)

The images are varying examples of two separate goal line camera shots shown on the ESPN telecast as Big Ten officials mulled whether MSU receiver Keith Nichol entered the end zone on the final play of regulation to give the Spartans a 37-31 victory - or not.

Closeup photo of Michigan State goal line play against Wisconsin to end the game

(Camera Behind Goal Line)

The question, obviously, isn’t whether Nichol appeared to have crossed the plane of the end zone in the goal line shots. Clearly it looks like he did in all of the images from both camera angles.

Closeup photo of Michigan State goal line play against Wisconsin to end the game

(Camera In Front Of Goal Line)

What matters is if the ESPN camera angles were linear enough to the goal line for a Big Ten replay official to cite conclusive proof in overturning the original call on the field. A call that had previously downed the ball inside the Wisconsin one-yard line and - had it stood - would’ve sent the game to overtime.

Closeup photo of Michigan State goal line play against Wisconsin to end the game

(Camera In Front Of Goal Line)

Though from these images, which include a superimposed goal line over the players involved, it’s hard to argue with the ultimate call made by Big Ten officials to overturn the ruling on the field.

Closeup photo of Michigan State goal line play against Wisconsin to end the game

(Camera In Front Of Goal Line)

But with neither camera square to the goal line, it isn’t unreasonable to think that perhaps Big Ten officials wouldn’t have had the stomach to overturn the original call on the field had the game been in Madison instead of East Lansing.

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Hoke’s ‘State’ Embargo Of Buckeyes Is By Design

Wednesday night I posted video of new Michigan football coach Brady Hoke referring to UM’s Buckeye rivals as “Ohio” over and over and over again.

Brady Hoke Michigan Countdown Clock To Ohio State Game

At the time I posted the footage, I wasn’t completely sure that Hoke had deliberately enacted an abbreviation-based embargo on Michigan’s interstate neighbors.

Now I am.

Today I was sent a photo of a rather unique clock currently on prominent display in the Michigan football team’s weight room that rules out Hoke’s halfway characterization of the Buckeyes as anything other than gamesmanship. The Wolverines coach has installed a reverse countdown clock in the UM conditioning facility that tracks the exact time ’til Michigan takes the field against Ohio State on Nov. 26, 2011. Under the clock’s display is a Buckeye football helmet and the words, “BEAT OHIO.

But “Ohio” isn’t the only UM rival assigned such in-house hokum by the Wolverines coach.

Hoke also has a backwards-running clock for Michigan’s Oct. 15, 2011, East Lansing engagement with Michigan State.

Brady Hoke Mark Dantonio Quote On Beating Michigan

A supposed quote by Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio - apparently uttered at a recent gathering of Ohio high school football coaches in Columbus - is also noted by a sign erected in the same UM training area: Read more…

Bama Bowl Prep a Form of Recruiting Malpractice?

This week WFTV-TV in Orlando reported details of Alabama’s upcoming Capital One bowl preparation plans.

Ha'sean Clinton-Dix and Nick Saban

Despite what are apparently sub-standard facilities, the Crimson Tide will hold practice at Orlando’s Dr. Phillips High School to get ready for Michigan State at the Citrus Bowl on New Year’s day.

WFTV reported that Alabama, in addition to renting the high school’s practice fields for a nominal fee, will “pay thousands of dollars to upgrade the facilities at Dr. Phillips.” Alabama will reportedly have a new playing surface installed and is in the process of renovating the locker rooms, which will include a new paint job.

Ha'sean Clinton-Dix Dee Hart and Nick Saban

The locker room remodeling and field upgrades will all be done at no cost to Dr. Phillips.

Chase Goodbread of the TUSCALOOSA NEWS reported Monday that Alabama coach Nick Saban said the upgrades were “common” and being done in the interest of “player safety.”

But if that’s the case why didn’t LSU make similar, significant upgrades when it practiced at Dr. Phillips last year before the same bowl game?

Or could Saban be holding out on us, playing Saint Nick in extending some completely innocent, holiday generosity to Dr. Phillips?

Today¬†Andrew Bone of the TUSCALOOSA NEWS may have provided us the answer to those questions. Read more…

Chicago Cubs Of College Football Make Their Move

Fresh off a 31-6 loss to Alabama last week, Florida Gator lineman Carl Johnson’s ‘these Crimson Tides are not gods‘ comment may have come off as comical.

Alabama South Carolina Scoreboard

(Fifth of Jack dumped in Bojangle’s gallon jug will do that)

But Johnson wasn’t proved wrong Saturday in Columbia.

Nick Saban made my other sign quit

My first job after graduating from the Univ. of Georgia was covering South Carolina football and basketball for WVOC-AM in Columbia, South Carolina. Read more…

It ‘Appeared’ Spartan Clock Expired Because It Did

After screenshots of the Spartan Stadium play clock registering :00 before Michigan State scored on its game-winning play against Notre Dame began circulating on the web postgame, the Big East released a statement on behalf of its conference officials who worked the game.

Michigan State Field Goal Formation :00 On The Play Clock

(Both the call and the officiating methodology is wrong on the play)

Statement:

After review, the conference believes that the game officials correctly applied the proper mechanics and guidelines that are in place to determine, in a consistent manner, when a flag should be thrown for delay of game.

The responsibility is assigned to the back judge, who in this situation was standing beneath the upright. Proper mechanics dictate that his focus be directed to the play clock as it approaches zero. When the play clock display reads zero, he must re-direct his attention to the ball. At that time, if the snap has not started, a flag will be thrown for delay of game. If the snap has begun, no flag will be thrown.

Under these procedures, there will always be a small amount of lag time between the time the clock reads zero and the time the back judge is able to see the football. On the play in question, this lag time created the situation where it appears the play clock expired just before the snap. We believe the snap occurred well within the normal lag time for the back judge to make this determination. This play is not reviewable under current NCAA rules.”

It appears the play clock expired just before the snap”?

It “appeared” the play clock expired before the snap because it did. The long snapper had not moved the football when the Spartan Stadium play clock reached :00. Watch for yourself: Read more…

We Are All Revisionists: Magic Admits Teaming Up

Tuesday Magic Johnson told Bloomberg News he would’ve never teamed up with other star NBA players the way LeBron James elected to join Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh on the Miami Heat:

Magic and LeBron

Magic: “We didn’t think about it ’cause that’s not what we were about. From college, I was trying to figure out how to beat Larry Bird.

Unfortunately for Johnson, newspaper archives exist. Specifically, the June 5, 1991, edition of the LOS ANGELES TIMES in which Johnson essentially admitted to doing exactly what James recently did. Read more…

Team Player? LeBron Won’t Speak To Tom Izzo!

The unintentionally uproarious conduct of LeBron James continues as CLEVELAND PLAIN DEALER Cavs beat reporter Brian Windhorst reports today:

Lebron James: All About Winning

(He’s All About Winning, Which Is Why He Won’t Talk To Izzo)

A source today: LeBron respects coach (Tom) Izzo but continues his plan not to get involved with Cavs coach search or speak to candidates.

So what’s preventing James from speaking to Izzo? Not club owner Dan Gilbert, who reportedly has Izzo as his first choice to coach the team. Read more…

Alamo Bowl: Most Watched Bowl In ESPN History

The television ratings for ESPN’s Alamo Bowl broadcast between Texas Tech and Michigan State last Saturday are out, and the numbers are stunning.

Adam James sign at Alamo Bowl

(Fans certainly had huge audience for their pro-Leach signs and sentiment)

The game drew a 5.2 overnight rating, reaching over 5.5 million households during the broadcast. That’s the largest audience for an ESPN bowl game telecast in the network’s history. Funny thing though, ESPN hasn’t been falling over itself promoting that fact - for obvious reasons.

Also, I’ve heard from a source at NBC here in Los Angeles today that the Jay Leno Show is attempting to book Mike Leach for the program this week. Another source told me last night that Leach is currently vacationing in Las Vegas.

Read more…

Michigan State Suspends Eight Over Dorm Attack

The Michigan State student newspaper STATE NEWS reports this afternoon that Michigan State football coach Mark Dantonio suspended eight Spartan players indefinitely today as campus police continue an investigation into a dorm attack November 22.

Report: Michigan State Football Players Stormed Dorm, Injured Women

Police have identified 10 suspects from the incident and are looking into leads relating to five additional people, a release from the university stated. Police identified the suspects by talking with witnesses and reviewing video tape from Rather Hall. The State News filed a Freedom of Information Request on Monday seeking the video footage.

Players B.J. Cunningham, Mark Dell, Ashton Leggett, Chris L. Rucker, Fred Smith, Brynden Trawick, Ishmyl Johnson and Jamiihr Williams were all cited in a school press release today as being identified at the site of the attack at Rather Hall.

Cunningham, Dell and Rucker are starters.

Read more…

Surprise! Michigan State Kicks 2 Players Off Team

Earlier today, I reported the Michigan State student paper reporting an attack on a Michigan State dorm that left seven people injured, including women. Some of the attackers were alleged to be Michigan State football players.

Glenn Winston Roderick Jenrette Kicked Off Michigan State Football Team

(No, Sparty, No!)

This afternoon, Michigan State football coach Mark Dantonio kicked players Glenn Winston and Roderick Jenrette off the team “for violation of team rules.”

It isn’t yet known if Winston and/or Jenrette were involved in the attack, but if they weren’t that’s a pretty amazing coincidence.

UPDATE: THE STATE NEWS has background on Winston and Jenrette and you’ll be shocked to find out that Winston recently served four month in jail for assault after an “altercation” with the MSU hockey team. Read more…