Dredging up the past!

It’s almost football season so cut me some slack as I dredge up a game from twelve and a half years ago. It’s ESPN’s fault for recently showing the “30 for 30” documentary on the University of Miami.

I innocently came across “The U part 2” while flipping through my TV channels. It was at the part where Miami and Ohio State were playing for the National Championship in the 2003 Fiesta Bowl. As I watched the Miami players whine about the pass interference call at the end of the first overtime, I realized how perception sometimes outweighs reality.

The perception is that Miami got screwed on the pass interference penalty and lost the game. The reality is the game should have never gone to overtime! I’m certainly not the first person to bring up the following facts. With the help of some screen-shots from my championship game DVD, let me expand. This was the situation:

Ohio State led the game 17-14 with 2:25 to play. They faced a 3rd and six at the Buckeyes 32 yard line. Ohio State would attempt a pass to get the first down. In the  screen-shot below, you can clearly see the Miami defender holding wide receiver Chris Gamble for three steps. And, for good measure, another grab of the jersey on his spin. This was an obvious hold that was not called. Ohio State should have been awarded a first down. With 2:18 remaining they would have been able to run out the clock. Game over!


On the same play, it was ruled that Gamble was out of bounds when he caught the ball. In this screen-shot notice the location of Gamble in relation to the sideline. This game was played before the implementation of instant replay. ABC did a horrible job with their camera angle and only showed the replay once from this vantage point. The catch was made for a first down. Ohio State should have been able to run out the clock. Game over!


On the ensuing punt let’s take a look at a nice little block in the back that helped spring Roscoe Parrish for a big return that put Miami in field goal range. No penalty was called! It would have moved Miami back to inside of their own 25 yard line and gave them a much longer field, instead of great field position after the punt. OSU-Punt

While the perception is Miami was hosed out of a second straight National Championship, the reality is, they lost. And, should have lost! So to the Miami players on that team, and anyone else agrees with them: Shut up and deal with reality!
Buckeyes 31-Miami 24 (2OT)