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9 more days…

sou football oshay dunmore

#9 Oshay Dunmore hits Brett Buchmann, ultimately forcing a fumble that resulted in a touchback call

@SOURaiders @SOU_Football @racetodaytona #RaceToDaytona #NAIAFootball #RoadToDaytona

Today’s photo features an odd play in the Morningside game. The ruling had the potential to cost the Raiders the game, but things worked out for SOU in such a way that the call didn’t ultimately matter. BTW, I have a series of five photos that clearly show that #1, Buchmann did catch the ball and #2, he did fumble the ball on the 13-yard line. After that the official scorer became as confused as the refs. Here is how the scorer called the play:

“GIDDENS, Thomas punt 49 yards to the MC18, Dvorak, Weslee return 0 yards to the MC18, fumble forced by JONES, Karringt, fumble by Dvorak, Weslee recovered by MC James, Taylor at MC0, touchback.”

The scorer got the players wrong. It was Buchmann and Dunmore, not Dvorak and Jones. The ball was not recovered by James. The ball went through the back of the end zone after both teams touched it.

Did the refs get the call correct? I still don’t know. I went through the official rule book and could not find an example of a punt being fumbled and then going through the end zone unrecovered. I did find a line that says “When in question, it is a touchback, not a safety.” so I guess one could say the refs were correct based on that.

But this ruling seems unfair given what transpired. It also leaves open the possibility of plays that could “game” the rule book. For instance, a punt returner who catches the ball on the 1-yard line and then sees that he can’t make it to the 20 could just fumble the ball out the back of the end zone to indirectly forward the ball 19 yards via a touchback. Is that fair? I don’t think so.

One Response to “9 more days…”

  1. 1
    John Gasman:

    I thought that was a safety too, like the celebrating Raiders. Very surprised by the ruling. While I didn’t check the rule book like you, a similar play had the same call in the NFL last weekend. So maybe it was right, real glad it didn’t matter in the end.