Monday, September 21, 2009

Thou shalt not discipline Boise players

Is there some WAC rule we don't know about prohibiting discipline against Boise State players? The Broncos have played just three games in the young season -- two of them featuring questionable behavior by their players.

We've all heard all about the first incident, when defensive lineman Byron Hout ran by Oregon star Lagarrette Blount, hit him on the helmet and shoulder pad before giving a little taunt, and then got a roundhouse to the chinny chin chin. Hout was not suspended for his actions.

Now, word out of the WAC office today is commish Karl Benson reviewed two Boise State hits from this past Friday's game at Fresno State -- both on Bulldogs quarterback Ryan Colburn -- and determined neither were worth disciplinary action.

The Fresno Bee wrote it this way: "In fact, Benson said further replay showed it was the shoulder pad of Broncos safety Winston Venable that came in contact with Colburn's helmet during the fourth-quarter collision ..."

Then The Bee quoted Benson as saying, "The Boise State defender was leading with his helmet, but did not make helmet-to-helmet contact. ..."

The Bee story then follows with this nugget: "Benson did say that the officiating crew should have flagged Venable with a personal foul for hitting a player above the shoulder pads ..."

Really? Does Benson have replays more clear than this one (fast forward to fourth quarter and listen to commentators' remarks)? Because, with my modest 20-20 human eyesight, it appears quite obvious that it was not Venable's shoulder pad that first came into contact with Colburn. It also appears possible there was indeed helmet-to-helmet contact (unless there are better replays available proving otherwise). And thirdly, the officiating crew did not flag Venable -- he got away with a hit and Boise State got away with a win.

Shoot, if I didn't know any better, I'd think Benson is a Boise State alum or something...


  1. Please just learn to play football, I get so tierd of all the fresno talk before a game, then all the excusses after the loss. Do you not get tierd of the same old story year in and year out. Please stop talking and win some games, don't blame it on anything but the team. I know you will lose to anyone , anytime anywhere. How about you just try winning and not talking.
    If you really want to break down game film and see who got away with what, let me know, I can point out many things on both sides of the ball. But they are not the reason Fresno lost or Boise won.

  2. Lame article.... Doesn't Fresno have some other team to prepare for, or at least some more excuses to come up with for getting beat by another team this coming week? Fresno lost to Wis because your home-boy threw a pick in overtime. Fresno lost to Boise because they couldn't stop their offense if their life depended on it. The only thing good coming out of Fresno is your running back. Now that guy can play!

  3. p.s. Pat Hill should shave his stash!!!! :)

  4. Do us all a favor and hope your team can keep from imploding the rest of the season. Which we all know is custom after a Boise State beatdown. Instead of questioning the legality of those brutal hits your QB keeps taking (not much longer at this rate), why don't you question your coaching staff's 4th quarter play-calling. That's what is truly suspect. Best of luck against Cincinnati. The Broncos could use a bump in their SOS and the rest of the WAC (including Fresno) does very little to help that cause.

  5. Wow. Interesting sources you choose to cite in order to get your point of view across.

    Above you quote the Fresno Bee:
    The Fresno Bee wrote it this way: "In fact, Benson said further replay showed it was the shoulder pad of Broncos safety Winston Venable that came in contact with Colburn's helmet during the fourth-quarter collision ..."

    Than later reference The Bee's direct quote of Benson:
    Then The Bee quoted Benson as saying, "The Boise State defender was leading with his helmet, but did not make helmet-to-helmet contact. ..."

    That's some good exclusionary journalism by both The Fresno Bee and yourself. What you have left out is Benson's full quote regarding the hit:
    "...the Boise State defender was leading with his head but did not make helmet-to-helmet contact. He made shoulder pad contact first, thus it was not a flagrant foul and no additional penalty or sanction was imposed."

    The author of The Bee's article misrepresented (innocently or intentionally) the actual quote from Benson. Benson stated that the Boise State player led with the helmet, but that the initial contact was into Colburn's shoulder pad. Thus should be a penalty for leading with the head, but no flagrant foul or further discipline was necessary.
    As for the ESPN commentators, they make reference to leading with the head, but there are not comments regarding helmet-to-helmet contact.
    If you need video evidence, freeze the video you provided at the 3:19 and 3:25 mark. Clearly no contact is being made to the helmet of Colburn.

  6. Benson, is an idiot.. he needs to go.....that is so obvious....If I ever wondered why the wac split apart do to complaints about Benson I certainly get it know, this is the icing on the cake...Someone needs to fine Benson for being so Bias and not looking out for the safety of the players...Maybe the Dogs need to get an attorney involved....We need Donald Trump to give Benson the words...YOUR FIRED!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. Those pieces of the story were quoted to keep it concise -- a journalism staple. Providing the whole quote there wasn't necessary, especially considering a link was provided to the full Bee article.

    I like how you point out the full quote like that's the only quote Benson gave on the topic. How do you know the reporter didn't ask him more? I don't know if he did either, but usually when you're paraphrasing what someone said, you're paraphrasing a different part of the interview, not the same exact part you quote in full.

    I'm not saying for sure there was helmet-to-helmet contact (to me it's inconclusive based on the above video).

    But I am saying the video appears to show that Venable's helmet hit somewhere on Colburn (helmet-first hit) and it also shows that Venable ducked his helmet down before making contact (they teach your to keep your head up on tackles, right?).

  8. Wow. Where I come from this is called being a sore loser. The Broncs gave you guys the what-for (again), get over it and move on to the one Cinci is going to give you.

  9. Hey, Boise State won the game. Fair and square. Not because of one potentially dirty hit. I guess the hit COULD have led to a different outcome, but it would have been an unlikely comeback at that point (the dropped interception was the clincher).

    I'd say defending this ruling is being a sore winner, if anything. The most ridiculous part of it might be that Fresno State was stripped of a women's basketball title by Benson just months ago because a player played like 32 mins. for an Austrailian team when she was 16 that was coached by her mom. The NCAA was OK with Fresno State's decision to make the player ineligible for the year, but Benson decided the WAC needed to issue further punishment and strip the team of its achievements. Wonder if he would have made that same decision if BCS dollars were on the line in women's basketball?

  10. I understand the place for brevity and need for paraphrasing. In this case the journalism staple goes awry when The Fresno Bee loses the original context of the quote when paraphrasing Benson. This is further compounded when you use The Bee as your sole source for an explanation of the matter.

    It is particularly egregrious since Anteola follows up Benson's statement with this confirming question:
    Anteola: "The review that you saw, it wasn’t helmet to helmet? Because I could have sworn when I saw it on the ESPN replay it looked like it was helmet to helmet."

    Benson: I encourage you to go back watch again..slow it down…that the …shoulder pad was the force on the helmet. I’ll tell you, it was a very close call.

    Benson states on two seperate occassions that Colburn was not hit in the helmet and yet Anteola misses it both times. The entire exchange is available here if you care to take a listen:

    Defending the ruling is not a case of sore winning. Benson got it correct when he indicated the player led with his head, but that no flagrant violation occurred. The reason for the defense of those that came here to comment were your intimations that the play allowed "Boise State [to get] away with a win."

    Someone put it best in comments elsewhere on the subject. If this was a hit by a Fresno player that was in question, you and the rest of Bulldog fans would be praising the return of tough Pat Hill football.

  11. Boise State DID get away with a win. 51-34 was the final score. I didn't say Boise State got away with a win BECAUSE of the hit, you inferred that.

    Maybe it was faulty for me to use just one source -- I originally went to the WAC site to use that release as a link, but no story was posted there. So I referred to The Bee, which I expect to be a credible source. If a mistake was made in the wording of the story, that's out of my control.

    Either way though, Benson admitted the play should have been a 15-yard personal foul. That might have pulled the 'Dogs right back within 7 points with about 7 minutes remaining. Who knows what would have resulted in that scenario?

    And if the hit was illegal and should have been flagged, but wasn't, Venable is just getting away with a cheap shot. Plain and simple. No discipline. No consequence. What's to stop it from happening again.

    Playing Bulldog Football is good, clean hitting. When Fresno State hit Tim Gilligan before the ball arrived on a punt return in '01, it got flagged. No one said that was gettting back to Pat Hill football. It was obviously early.

    Venable led with his head. Not debateable. He had his head down, and it shows him shifting to that position in mid-air. Not debateable. The video replay above is debateable. Unless Benson has a better angle or zoom or something, he can't say for sure it wasn't helmet-to-helmet.

    Furthermore, did he even interview the player to try and gauge whether there was intention there?

  12. Ok I always root for Fresno after our game but really you guys are turning yourselves into a joke. You really have the victim mentality going for you.; especially when you start flat out making stuff up.

    First thing first Hout never touched Blount's helmet. Not even close. And what you call a hit was nothing more than a tap. Its obvious you are trying to sensationalize the Blount incident to fit your argument. In fact Blount later reported that he didn't even hear what Hout said.

    As far as the Venable hit look at the 36 second mark. You can clearly see the running back getting low to block Venable at his legs. You also see Venable starting to react in diving over the back. A couple of Fresno fans have tried to make the argument that Venable started to dive before the running back went after his legs. If you're one of those people please do us all a favor and seek help. As for diving watch any game you will always see tons of players diving; on both sides of the ball. In fact runners always lead with their helmets when they dive. The only difference here was that Venable had to dive OVER someone.

    As for the hit itself look at the 48 second mark. At that point if Venable doesn't lower his head his mommentum would have caused the hit to be helmet to helmet. If he hadn't lowered his helmet RC would have been in some serious trouble. Not really much you can do in that situation. Except maybe lower your helmet and avoid the helmet to helmet collision.

    If you guys are really so passionate about protecting players maybe you will admit that you should have had a penalty called on yourselves? Watch the video of RC getting hit when he was on the run. Just before Tevis is about to hit RC a fresno defender dives in to Tevis's back clearly changing his trajectory and making that hit as violent as it was. Both teams were lucky that Tevis and RC weren't really hurt on that play. Getting hit in the shoulder doesn't even come close to two players running full speed and essentially coming to a dead stop while hitting helmet to helmet...thanks to the fresno defender.

  13. Fresno State is a joke


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