Notre Dame: Brian Kelly Disputes Late Penalty
This Saturday’s premier matchup between undefeated Notre Dame and also undefeated and reigning national champion Florida State ended in somewhat controversial fashion. Down by 4 in the final seconds, Notre Dame, deep in the red zone, had one last play to score and win the game on 4th and goal. They scored on a 2 yard TD pass to Corey Robinson, but the play was negated due to an offensive pass interference that I am still struggling to understand myself. Notre Dame Coach Brian Kelly offered a breakdown of the play in question.
“All right, so he was on the point, we were in a bunch situation,” Kelly began. “First of all, it’s my understanding now that Will Fuller was called for the penalty, not C.J. So C.J.’s job is to get into the end zone and turn around and be a big target. He was immediately grabbed at the line of scrimmage. He’s trying to get depth into the line of scrimmage, into the end zone so Corey can clear a path. And so as that contact was being made, it was seen, I guess — I don’t know who saw it as interference — but you’ve got two guys that are trying to fight for space. We saw it as such. He’s supposed to find space, sit down and be a target. Again, it’s a play that’s a pretty common play in NCAA football — where you’re setting a point, guy turns around and the ball is thrown. The ball was thrown quickly, C.J. didn’t even have a chance to turn around — which may have led to some of the objects that people were talking about on TV, that he was blocking — but he was simply trying to get his space in the end zone. And then of course now we’re hearing that it was actually called on Will Fuller. So it’s hard for me to really put it all together”
ACC officials are defending the call, saying that it was the correct call and that plays such as that often come down to the judgment of the official on if the contact was incidental or not.
Tommy Messina | News Cult