Thursday, December 29, 2005

Wild Finish At Alamo Bowl

          Terrence Nunn

"Throw it over your shoulder!!!!"

That was me shouting at the Wolverine player who was being tackled out of bounds on the final play of the Alamo Bowl.  Up to that point, Michigan was finishing off a choke job that netted Nebraska a 32-28 win in San Antonio.  With 8 minutes left in the game, Nebraska had a long kick return, a long TD run, a takeaway, and a TD pass to take a 4-pt lead into the closing minutes.  Then the final play.

Something out of that Cal_Stanford game occured, when Michigan passed the ball, and ran about 8 latterals trying to score.  It almost worked.  One of the latterals went to an offensive lineman who couldn't catch the ball....but the fumble was picked up by a Wolverine player who sprinted down the field and was eventually caught at the 15 yard line.  Maybe a blind toss behind him in the air....and a Michigan player [there were a couple there] would've caught it and ran it the rest of the way. 

What made it all the more bizarre was that when the offensive lineman couldn't catch the ball....pretty much every Nebraska player and coach on the sideline walked on the field...some got to near midfield....while the play was still going.  There were also several Michigan players and coaches on the field...but since the play was coming towards their sideline, they quickly moved back.  There were also Alamo Bowl "officials" or employees on the field...including a couple running alongside the ball carrier as he was being pushed out of bounds.  The capper was the fact that Cornhusker coach Bill Callahan was douced in Gatorade as that play was continuing. 

Of course, in a season where both programs has very disappointing seasons and both coaches are burning over a hotseat....this was an important game for both sides.  Nebraska ends the season 8-4 after winning some huge games down the stretch.  It may give Nebraska some confidence in Bill Callahan, who is really trying to put his passing offense into a program that hasn't recruited that personnel before he got there.  He may get another chance to see if his plan works.

As for Michigan,their 7-5 is VERY disappointing.  Heck, my preseason preview had the Wolverines playing in the Rose Bowl against USC for the BCS Championship.  And if not for a last second TD toss against Penn State, they'd be 6-6!!!!  Lloyd Carr may or may not be back after this season.

I will give it up to the Alamo Bowl...which has become quite a exciting bowl to watch. 

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