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Comments on the UC Davis game

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Jason Shelley with the touchdown catch that was ruled out of bounds

@jasonshelley_ @SOURaiders @SOU_Football

At first glance, yesterday’s game looks like a bit of a blowout with a final score of 52-35. It remains to be seen if the NAIA coaches will punish the Raiders for losing to an NCAA D1 school when the new poll comes out on Monday. They probably will as strength of schedule isn’t something they seem to look at much. Don’t be surprised if they have Doane and maybe even Kansas Wesleyan ahead of SOU even though Massey Ratings has Doane at #17 and Kansas Wesleyan (who the Raiders beat 52-8 in the playoffs last year) at #50.

However, before saying UC Davis dominated SOU, let’s look a little closer at the stats. The Raiders actually gained more yards than UC Davis (653 to 617). Ignoring the interception on the “Hail Mary” at the end of the game, had the turnover differential been zero instead of -4, the Raiders probably would have won the game.

Even with the horrible turnover differential, had three plays been different (two blown calls by the officials and one mental error that turned into a very costly penalty) the final score may have been 42-38 in favor of SOU.

The first was in the second quarter with about 7 and a half minutes on the clock. The refs gave UC Davis a touchdown on a pass that was fairly clearly out of bounds. You can watch a replay of the game, BTW, here.

The second was on a third and long, the UC Davis quarterback threw a pass out of bounds. A late hit resulted in a UC Davis first down (instead of UC Davis being forced to punt on fourth and long) that turned into a touchdown for the Aggies. That TD would not have happened without the penalty against SOU.

The third was in the 3rd quarter with about 10 and a half minutes on the clock. A pass to Jason Shelley was caught in the back of the end zone. He got one foot down, which is all you need in college, and he didn’t bobble the ball at all. I have a series of photos showing this (one pictured above). You can also see it on the video. The official did not give the Raiders the earned touchdown, and SOU subsequently failed to score on the drive.

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