We’re, most of us, football fans here.  So I have a question for ya.  Consider this video that has gone viral:

Here’s the play, in a nutshell, because there isn’t a play-by-play:

The play started on the play before.  The offensive line (guys in white, Driscoll) drew the defense (yellow/purple, WinSeal) offsides, thereby earning a 5 yard penalty for themselves.  Driscoll then set up on the new Line of Scrimmage, but as they bent to hike the ball, the coach starts yelling at the QB from the sidelines.  QB stands up and is acting like he can’t hear the coach, who continues to yell that his team has set up on the wrong line, and that they need to move the ball another 5 yards.  The center (the guy bent over with the ball) then hands the ball over his shoulder to the QB, who takes it and begins strolling leisurely through the Defensive line.  Once past the Line, he takes off running for the End Zone, and ultimately scores.

For the record, the game ended in a 6-6 tie, but Driscoll did not win the Championship (which this game was played to decide), because WinSeal had more offensive penetrations than Driscoll did.

So, the question is, is this a “sportsmanlike” play?  Should it have been allowed?

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13 Responses to Sportsmanlike?

  1. Paul says:

    It should not be a play

  2. Joy says:

    I agree with Paul. If the coach was talking to any member of the team that way a time out should have been issued. This is cheating in my humble opinion and I don’t think it’s a good lesson for this coach to be teaching these boys if he had anything to do with it.

    It’s funny but I don’t think it should have counted.

  3. Jenny says:

    Very clever, but also very unsportsman like! It should have not counted.

  4. Nikki says:

    Bailey didn’t play football this year but several of his friends did. We went to a few. There was one team, the yellow team and they had a play similar to this. The center would act as if he needed a new ball, start walking toward the side line and dart towards the end zone. Very unsportsmanlike. Not too many parents were happy, obviously the opposing teams parents. They were also taught to drag down, pull on shirts, all to stop the kid from scoring. This was flag football.

    Come on people, win the right way, or they’ll never truly learn to be the best they can be. It’s cheating in a way, to me.

  5. SKL says:

    That coach should be sanctioned.

    I’d hate to see this become a trend, because then the whole way teams are trained would have to change. It would become more about sneakiness and less about athleticism. (I know there is already some sneakiness in football, but . . . .)

    The biggest issue I have with this is that you’re not allowed to take cheap shots at the quarterback, so even if this isn’t an illegal play, all those defenders would be very reluctant to mess with him until they were absolutely sure the ball was in play.

    And also, that is not very fun to watch. Football is a spectator sport, after all.

  6. Vicki says:

    My first thought was that was brilliant although it was not right..imagine what wouldve happened had the defence hog piled on him.

  7. Laura says:

    I’m on the fence on this one.

    First, something that I’m working very hard with Josh on, is “ONLY listen to the officials”. He is in Tae Kwon Do, and has begun doing competitions. At those competitions, he is entered in Olympic Sparring, where they fight (they’re completely padded, so it’s safe). Almost always, I see (not only in Josh’s matches, but in others as well) coaches yelling to their athlete, shouting out advice. There is also a large computer screen set up at the edge of the mat, which displays the score. So there are a lot of distractions. I work with Josh, telling him to focus on his opponent, and listen to the Referee ONLY. Those other coaches don’t matter. Don’t let them distract you. The screen doesn’t matter. Don’t look at it. If you do, it could cost you a crucial hit.

    So when I see this video, I think, the WinSeal guys should NOT have even heard that coach. They should have been focused on the ball, and listening for the whistle. The minute the ball moved, if there was no whistle, they should have dog-piled on the QB.

    In that respect, it’s a fair play. A “trick play”, which I love in football (and why I absolutely love watching Boise State play).

    But then I think, wait a minute. That coach shouldn’t have instigated the play. If they’re going to do this, it should be player-driven. In that respect, it’s unsportsmanlike.

    Finally, where were the officials? Shouldn’t they have stopped it? Were they confused by the coach, too? And if they were, they should be dumped as officials, because their focus needs to be on the game, and not on some joker yelling from the sidelines.

    The biggest ‘thing’ for me is not this play, but the fact that it started on the play before, with the offense intentionally pulling a foul by drawing the other team Offsides. I hate basketball for just that reason – that fouls are intentional and accepted as part of game strategy. I think that’s where the line is drawn for me, and what makes me say “unsportsmanlike”.

    I just wrote a whole other post, didn’t I? I really have to learn to be more brief.

  8. Joy says:

    Toby was down last night and I showed him this clip and asked what he thought. He’d seen this on either ESPN or NFL Live or something and he felt that yes, it was sneaky and not necessarily “the right thing to do” or the “right way to coach” but really, the ball was hiked and nobody really stopped it and like Laura said, they all should have tackled the guy “JUST IN CASE.” Just like in baseball you run even if you think your ball is foul.

    BUT….then he also said if the coach had any part of the play, it’s a wrong way to teach kids to play and he wondered what would happen if a pro team did this. Would those guy just stand there and watch? No whistle blew and as far as anyone knew, it was a play in motion. Just because we don’t think it right doesn’t mean it wasn’t a fair play.

    But I still feel if the coach was talking to the player, it should have been ruled a time out. Football coaches don’t try to yell to players on the field. If they want someone’s attention, they get it and you don’t see coaches yelling plays or telling a player what to do in public. God forbid someone might know your play. I think the refs dropped the ball on this one by not blowing the whistle.

  9. mssc54 says:

    I can’t believe that all the previous commentors got this WRONG!

    I played football in both Jr. High and Highschool. This is basic football 101. Once you are on the line it’s a “live” ball. No whistle, no exception. This coach should be congratulated! How many of those players do you think will EVER forget, NO WHISTLE, LIVE BALL?!

    • Nikki says:

      Wrong in your opinion. MY opinion is yes, it is legal, but is this teaching them to be the best the can be. How about implement a real play that takes skill? I wouldn’t want my son to be taught this.

    • Joy says:

      I don’t like the sneaky plays either. Legal or otherwise, it’s like tricking. What if he’s had been hurt of was going to be sick. Then all those boys would have gotten into trouble for any number of things. Cheap shots are really getting penalized now. I think this is really poor taste and if my kids were on the team I’d be ashamed.

  10. lucy says:

    I don’t know anything about football… but it definitely sounds like that was not sportsmanlike play

  11. Jim says:

    “mssc54” was the only one that got it right. The play was legal and it taught the defense a lesson.

    Laura – the fact that they “drew” the other team off sides doesn’t hold water… if they drew the other team off sides, that means they moved (false start) and got penalized for it, so the ball would have been movedd back instead of forward, and as we all know, it’s the responsibility of the defense to not go off sides.

    SKL – All sports involve some sort of “sneekieness”, I’ve seen a first baseman hide the ball in his glove, as the pitcher walks toward the mound the runner on first takes his lead-off and the first baseman simply tags him out. Totally legal, and teaches the players that they have to pay attention at all times to what is going on, and to know the rules.

    And, beyond all that it was just plain fun to watch and it added some “zing” to the game.

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