Monday, October 21, 2013

3 Losses, 1 Space-Time Singularity

Bad weekend, CFB-wise, for my various rooting interests.
Carolina got the bad end of 2 game-changing breaks which cost them 14 points in a 4-pt loss.  But that, I understand, is why they call them 'breaks.'

USC, on the other hand, apparently can't play football very well, so even though Notre Dame can't either, USC lost by almost exactly the amount you are supposed to lose by when playing an equally crappy team on the road.

But Georgia?  Georgia got screwed.

I saw this first on Deadspin, which has the best video, btw.
What you see in the attached picture is Georgia's tackle and sack leader, Ray Drew, an instant before he gets to Vandy's QB who an instant before had thrown the ball.  That is what you can definitely see here: a guy about to hit another guy, whose right arm is following through on a just-released pass.

What you don't see is Drew - again, Georgia's #1 defensive player - run into the QB an instant later, knocking him down, clearly pulling up and leading with his shoulders and arms as he does so.  You can take my word for all that.

But, actually, I don't want you to.

In fact, I don't want to convince you of anything about this hit besides the single thing that you can say about it, empirically, from this picture: Drew hitting the QB is, at the moment of this snapshot, in the future.

But while the hit is not in the picture, something else is: the referee's penalty flag.  That's neither opinion nor conclusion - it's right there. He has already pulled it from his pocket.  In fact, it's far enough out of his pocket at this moment to be visible from this angle - from behind - even though the flag is coming out of his front pocket.  So - and this part actually *is* my opinion though as back-up I'd cite the physical laws of the universe - this picture does not capture the instant the ref *decided* to pull the flag.  That decision must have been made at least a half-second prior to this picture, at a time when the UGA guy would have been even farther away - 1 step? 2? - from the QB than he is here.

The infraction the referee calls for this hit, which has not yet occurred, is 'targeting'.

The penalty: Automatic ejection.

It cannot be determined from this picture and application of settled Newtonian physics whether or not UGA would still have lost.  But they were up 27-14 late before the defense gave up 2 late drives getting no pressure on the QB.

So nice work all the way around by the refs, UGA and the space-time continuum.

(but not SC or Carolina.  They just sucked).

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