Monday, September 15, 2008

There's a reason Merril Hoge isn't the Commish

So I had Sportscenter on today, and Merrill Hoge was talking about the Broncos-Chargers game this weekend. So the question was, whether or not he liked the gutsy call by Shanahan to go for two at the end of overtime.

Naturally, I expected him to say that he liked it. For one thing, every ESPN commentator that has said anything about it has been singing Shanahan's praises relentlessly, and for another it of course they take his side.

Hoge decides to take that plan a few steps further, or perhaps several light-years further. Merril Hoge steps up on the soap box and suggests that field goals and extra points be banned entirely during the last 5 minutes of a football game. Go for it on fourth down, even if it's 4th and goal from the 33. Go for two. As he said, "we're not going to do anything to overtime, so let's just keep games from going in to overtime".

Other things that would keep games from going into overtime: if a game ends in a tie, have the coaches whip it out and see who is bigger; if a home team can't win in regulation, the away team should be declared the winner; have Ed Hochuli arm wrestle the coaches, and the coach with less bone and ligament damage be declared the winner. All of those would make more sense than making a team go for it on 4th and goal from the 33 with 10 seconds left, trailing by 3 points. Not to mention: five minutes? How did Hoge come up with that? So if a game is tied 28-28 at the end of the first quarter and there is no further scoring in regulation, then overtime is ok but we can't have a game become tied in the last five minutes?

Oh, and just for the sake of argument, how is taking the strategy out of the coaches hands more exciting than sudden death overtime? Granted there are A LOT of problems with sudden death overtime, but remember this is the instituion that brought us the back-to-back walk-off interception returns for touchdowns by Mike Brown. Honestly, stupid shit like this is why people hated the XFL.

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