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Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Buck U

Let's get something clear right off the bat. I'm not qualified to commentate on the topic of football. That being said, I'm about to commentate on the topic of football.

Despite being a die-hard cheerleader, I don't sit down and watch football games. I read library books. People don't hire me to write articles on my opinions about football games and for good reason. But I do however write snarky recaps of reality shows and after sitting through the Ohio State/Clemson game Saturday night, it occurred to me that it's all basically the same thing.

Everybody seems to have an opinion about that game so I thought I'd throw in my unbiased 2 cents. To set the record straight, I am a Buckeyes fan simply because I married a Buckeye's fan, and for the sake of my marriage, when he yells, "O-H" I will obediently answer, "I-O!" I always hope they win, but only because that effects the rest of my day too, and the fact that my granddaughter's name is Scarlet Gray and I use her baby pictures to make inappropriate memes is irrelevant.

That being said, I had no stake in the Ohio State/Clemson game. And in my opinion, since I'm openly admitting to having zero comprehension of the rules of the game, much less knowing any names of the players, I think you can trust my unbiased observations on what went down at the PlayStation Fiesta Bowl that night.

Side note. While I was writing this, I literally had to text my husband and ask which Bowl game it was because, unbiased. And I literally replied, 'PlayStation Fiesta Bowl? WTH kind of lame bowl name is that?'

Seriously, do they just throw random words together and put Bowl at the end? Like, hey there you Ohio State and Clemson guys...you played games and stuff and you know who's known for games and stuff? Play Station. And it looked like you were having fun. Hey! Fiestas are fun. And voila. The PlayStation Fiesta Bowl was born. It sounds like the equivalent of a participation trophy bowl until your husband tells you that there's also a Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla Bowl, a San Diego County Credit Union Holiday Bowl, and a Tony The Tiger Sun Bowl, which I can only assume is the bowl reserved for the teams who played GRRRRREAT!!!

Okay, if the names of the bowls are like little league t-shirts with the sponsor's name across the front, are you trying to tell me that Tony The Tiger sponsored a bowl? Let me stop you right there. I think you mean Frosted Flakes, which would make that The Cereal Bowl if we were to be accurate with the half-assed naming of the bowls.

And one more thing before we get to the game. Can we ask why the Ohio State end zone was rust orange? Was PlayStation too cheap to spring for red? Wonder what Tony The Tiger's budget was?

Ok. Onto the game. Seeing as I already admitted I know less than nothing about the technical game of football, I see no reason to discuss every play. I'll just focus on the highlights and keep my observations about the pivotal and controversial points of the game according to the reactions of my husband and son as they sat beside me watching.

1. The Buckeyes were winning pretty solidly except for a couple of missed touchdowns and they ended up kicking the ball instead. Only one of the missed touchdowns stands out to me, because the refs decided to "review the play" and noticed in super slow motion that the ball turned a little in the guy's hands in the end zone and so they reversed the original call on the field and took the touchdown away. That seems a bit unfair considering the guy was sliding across the grass on his head at the time, but, oooh, that ball moved a little. NO TOUCHDOWN FOR YOU. As one of the announcers pointed out, "That's why it's so important to review these plays in slow motion.
Remember that he said that. It'll be important later.

2. All that aside, things were going pretty well for Ohio State until their player with the long orange tipped hair got kicked out of the game because his helmet hit the Clemson quarterback in the face. In his defense, that quarterback is like 8 feet tall and from where I was sitting, it looked like he bent his face right into it. Also, it's football, so hitting people with your helmet seems like part of the game, unless of course you're the Clemson player whose helmet just rolled off willy nilly and he bonked his head on the ground. Dude. Don't they make straps for that? But he didn't get kicked out. I mean, the trainer took him away for a few minutes, but probably just to show him how to use the chin straps for future reference.

3. At one point, a short fast guy on the Buckeye team the announcers referred to as a bowling ball for some reason, hurt his ankle. It appeared that happened when a guy from Clemson grabbed onto it and was holding onto it for dear life while the poor bowling ball dragged him along. Probably targeted him, too, but did anyone review THAT play in slow motion? Nope.

4. This wasn't pivotal or anything, but needs to be addressed. Ohio State did something that had my guys laughing. I don't understand it and probably never will no matter how many times my husband tries to explain it to me. Something about a clap that made the Clemson team turn their heads to look at their coach and the Buckeyes barreled into them while they stood staring off to the side. I don't get it, but apparently it was legal, not to mention clever, and I'm a fan of clever.

5. Another moment for the Buckeyes happened when I noticed one of the Clemson players practically leap over a ref trying to bolt across the field to his sideline, but the Buckeyes started the play before he got off the field and Clemson was penalized for too many players on the field. Also clever, but seriously Clemson? When you know you're that short on time and you have to get off the field, just jump off on the Buckeye side. Maybe you could ask 'em about that sneaky sneak clap play while you're over there.

6. BUT THEN, the big terrible thing happened and nobody was laughing anymore. Clemson caught a pass, fumbled it, the Buckeyes picked it up, and scored a touchdown. The refs called it just like that, too. Until they decided to "review the play." While that happened, we were treated to a disagreement between the announcers. One announcer seemed to think that slow motion showed it exactly as the play was originally called on the field and that it should stand. But the other guy, the one who pointed out the importance of reviewing plays in slow motion, was suddenly saying, "Slow motion isn't always the most accurate way to determine these calls."

Whoa. Hold up. So you're saying that this time, slow motion should not be used because real time is more accurate and therefore, it should cost the Buckeyes a touchdown. Hey! Remember that time 3 quarters ago when you declared the infallibility of reviewing a play in slow motion and it cost the Buckeyes a touchdown? I bet Buckeye Nation does.

So the "powers that be in the replay center" finally made their decision. They decided that even though the guy was like, literally coming down with the ball in his hands and taking steps before he dropped it, that he didn't really catch the ball at all, so that means, when he dropped the ball, he wasn't really dropping the ball, because it doesn't matter what the replay shows. If you say he didn't really catch it in the first place, you get to say he didn't really drop it either, so they decided to change the call.  According to my husband, reversing an original call should only happen when review of the play unquestionably proves the call was a blatant mistake, but when even the announcers are debating what they're seeing, it makes it appear that the "powers that be in the replay center" might've been looking for an excuse change the original call.

*whispering* shhh...I think they might be democrats.

7. Just in case you suspect I'm Buckeye biased, I'm going to tell you something I'm not allowed to say in front of my husband. I like the Clemson quarterback. There, I said it. I liked how he patted the Buckeye players after plays and helped his guys up when they were down. He seemed like a genuinely nice guy and I truly believe he didn't mean to hit his face on the Buckeye guy's helmet and get him kicked out of the game. I was also happy to see him score a touchdown because his mom was there to see it and she deserves that. Plus, he looks like her and they're both really pretty, even though that has nothing to do with the game. This is me being impartial. You're welcome.

So there you have my unbiased observations. No matter what you believe about the Buckeye's mistakes or the ref's calls, the end result remains the same. The Buckeye's can hold their heads high knowing they played a pretty good first half of the game, the little bowling ball can finally rest his ankle, and Clemson will go on to play in the game known as, 'The College Football National Championship Presented by AT and T.' At least they chose a name that answers any and all questions so everybody's not left wondering, "But who is it presented by?"

As for me, I'll keep my day job...unless of course they want to hire me as a sideline commentator to represent the common folk who just want someone to ask about the obvious things until they fire me, which would happen the first game obviously, but like, which quarter? I would just be like, "Nice to meet everyone. Why's that guy's hair the same color as the end zone and who's that jerk announcer that can't seem to keep his biased opinions straight? I'll show myself out."

ESPN, call me.




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