It is definitely obvious that Big 12 coach, Paul Rhoads is not a happy camper. The Iowa Cyclones' head football coach clearly felt some kind of way in regards to the close 31-30 loss Thursday night at the hands of the Texas Longhorns. But, the kicker is that he actually had a legitimate reason for his frustration.
In the post-game media conference following the devastating loss, Rhoads held no punches. He said exactly what he wanted to say – well maybe not exactly what he wanted to say. But, his scowling demeanor wreaked of the disgruntlement he had no qualms about showing. Full exclusive coverage from the media conference was posted on Cyclone.TV, which is Iowa State's athletic channel on YouTube.
Rhoads' intensity may have seemed a little disconcerting for those who didn't get to see the game live. However, Rhoads' rant was actually justified judging from the footage of the last 1:30 of the game. The Cyclones were up by a touchdown, and Texas was in possession of the ball. After the snap, Longhorns' running back, Johnathan Gray, clearly fumbled in close proximity of the goal line at around the 1-yard line.
From all of the angles on the footage replays, it actually appeared that he was stripped of the ball by Cyclones' LB Jeremiah George who came out of the huddle with the ball. Game commentators also made the same assumption based on the playback. That game-deciding drive occurred with not even a full minute left on the clock. However, officials made the call in favor of the Longhorns, stating that Gray's progress had been stopped and he was already down by contact before the fumble.
The call ultimately sealed the game. Longhorns' Case McCoy ended up scoring a 1-yard touchdown that tied the game. The final conversion point brought the score to 31-30, reported ESPN Dallas-Fort Worth.
Coach Rhoads' and the game commentators were obviously not the only ones who saw the play differently. Retired Texas A&M Director of Athletics, Bill Byrne, also tuned into the game, and weighed in on Twitter to share his perspective.
Watched it happen too many times. When tu needs a call, they get it. Clearly a fumble. Call goes for tu.
— Bill Byrne (@Bill_Byrne) October 4, 2013
It is quite evident that the game officials made an error that cost the the Cyclones the “W.” The game officials may not have heard the last of concerns about the game's outcome. However, Big 12 officials have yet to address whether any further actions will be taken in regards to the situation.
Image via Wikimedia Commons