Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Why the Boise State Game Was the Greatest Football Game Ever
Now, lots of teams mount comebacks. And that's a wonderful thing. But to do it with these kinds of zany plays and wacky fiddle-faddle takes this to a whole other level.

It's isn't just scoring a touchdown on a 50-yard hook and ladder play on fourth and forever with the clock winding down to tie it; or, a scoring pass on an option pass by a wide receiver who took the snap while the quarterback trotted into a pass patter; or to win the game on a State of Liberty run when they could have gone for a routine, game-tying extra point.

No it is having the guts and imagination to try those plays, to come up with them, practice them, have the courage to call them, and then to pull them off that makes it remarkable. We're still taking about the hook and ladder play in the 1982 AFC playoff game between Miami and San Diego, but that was at the end of the first half. This was for the ball game. If any one of those gambles had failed, it would have been over.
To that we offer Boise running back Ian Johnson. Johnson, does, in fact, knit. In fact, apparently his knitted caps for women are something of a marketing sensation up in Boise. The story is that mother suggested he take up knitting to help him relax. So that's cute.

Then, when Johnson crossed the goal line for the two point conversation that won the game, he threw the ball into the stands.

Exuberance? Sort of. Actually, Johnson knew where his father was sitting and tossed the ball to him. Here's betting that ball ends up in the Boise Hall of Fame eventually, but it was a very nice thought.

But wait, there's more.

Interviewed on national television, Johnson decided to go with an announcement he'd been planning for next week. He got down on one knee and proposed to cheerleader Chrissy Popadics.

I'm not going to pretend I watched this. But...lead changes, trick plays, overtime, a final 2-point conversion, and a proposal? That is one nutty game.

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