This is probably the football highlight I have seen replayed the most. Stanford versus Cal, an insane amount of laterals, the band rushed onto the field prematurely and chaos ensues. Standford laid out an incredibly improbable comeback... or did they??
I watched a special in which they interviewed players that were on both sides of the ball that day (they even chatted with the trombone player that got knocked over at the end of the play). The central discussion surrounded whether or not one of the players was down before he released the ball. I hadn't picked up on the controversial part of the play until I saw this show, but upon further review, it does appear as if the third lateral came too late and the play should have been dead, game over, Cal wins.
The part in question happens around the 15-second mark as the ball carrier is surrounded by white shirts.
If you are able to get a good look, or have seen it previously, what do you think--was he down before he got the lateral off?
Almost equally important, at what point during that play does the band think it is acceptable to step on the field?
The first time I watched the video I didn't see the controversial play and was completely distracted by the fact that the band was on the field. Since when is that ok? My jaw dropped and I started laughing out loud at the computer as the player with the ball ran through the band on his way to completely taking out the trombone player. Ridiculous! However, after I finally stopped laughing I reviewed the play a couple times and I think he was definitely down before throwing the ball. Tough call for an official to make and especially in that point of the game where it's make or break and with a distraction as big as the band inappropriately rushing the field before the game is over.
This is a great post. I'm going with missed call.
Haha Yeah, it is pretty ridiculous all-around--makes me laugh too.
I saw this response to The Play, which claims to solve the controversy by using 3-D technology. I'm not sold... but interesting nonetheless.
I'm with you... I think I'm still going with missed call as well.