Oklahoma State thought they had survived Saturday’s matchup against Central Michigan when they ran out the clock up 27-24. But that’s just when the craziness started.
Facing a fourth down with less than ten seconds to go, Oklahoma State’s Mason Rudolph threw a long pass downfield just to run out the clock. But as the players started to go on to the field, thinking the game was over, the officials were discussing a penalty.
It turns out the pass was illegal since there were no receivers downfield. It was ruled intentional grounding.
The officials met at the middle of the field and determined that the game would be extended with one untimed down since the game cannot end on a penalty.
This gave the ball to Central Michigan for one play, form their own 49-yard line, with no time on the clock.
Sure enough, Central Michigan threw a Hail Mary pass that was caught inside the five-yard line. But just when it seemed like he was going to be tackled short of the end zone, he lateraled the ball to a teammate who ran all the way to the other side of the field and just got into the endzone before being tackled.
Central Michigan wins!
But should they have? Maybe not.
According to Mike Pereira of Fox Sports, the officials appeared to have erred in giving Central Michigan an extra play in the first place.
While a game cannot end on an accepted penalty, the rule book does have an exception to the rule, that being penalties against the offence that also include loss of down. The intentional grounding penalty does include loss of down.
“The rule book does state that you don’t extend for an offensive penalty if the offensive penalty includes loss of down,” Pereira said.
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