Another targeting call success story

I’m not saying the decision to overrule the targeting call on Texas A&M’s Ricky Seals-Jones during Auburn’s 26-10 win last weekend was incorrect, but when Steve Shaw has to explain the decision by saying,

“The players’ safety trumps everything, and we want guys — just like it happened in that game — to put the marker on the ground and then replay has to look at the forcible versus incidental component on that…”

on a hit that resulted in the defender suffering three torn ligaments in his right knee and a severe dislocation of that knee, I’d say you’ve done a pretty good job of sending a mixed message.  Which was supposed to be the opposite purpose of coming up with the targeting penalty in the first place.

Well played, all.

27 Comments

Filed under SEC Football, The Body Is A Temple

27 responses to “Another targeting call success story

  1. Anyone have a clip of the hit? I didn’t see it but saw some Auburn friends on FB complaining after the game about targeting being overturned on a play that blew his knee out. Just trying to understand how a hit up high led to a knee injury, seems an unusual cause/effect.

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    • gastr1

      http://www.saturdaydownsouth.com/auburn-football/video-gruesome-leg-injury-ends-season-auburn-db/

      I have to admit it appears to me to be a legal shoulder-to-shoulder hit–just incredibly violent.

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      • Wowzers, yeah that was a brutal hit. His foot must have been planted just right, I can’t recall seeing a hit up high make a knee bend like that. But the fact that he blew out his knee doesn’t have anything to do with whether it was targeting or not, which is what I suspected when I was reading their comments.

        I am starting to come around to Gary Danielson’s opinion tho that these peel back blocks should be illegal. I’m not totally on board with the idea of banning them, but I can see some merit to it.

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        • James Stephenson

          They are illegal now in the NFL. And it has bitten my Falcons in the ass, however, I understand why they made it a foul.

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        • gastr1

          Rev., I had the same thought re: his foot planted “just right,” so to speak (probably more like “just wrong,” in this case)…not what seems to happen with that kind of hit 99.9% of the time.

          He also separated his shoulder, though, too, and that’s clearly a result of the force of the hit and might make a better case for disallowing this kind of block where possible.

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      • gastr1

        On second thought, I managed to freeze the video at 0:10, where it is clear there’s helmet-to-helmet contact. Should have been targeting beyond any doubt–and the replay official should have been able to freeze at the same place I did.

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  2. Keith Marshall wishes someone had thrown a flag on the Tennessee DB that took away a season and a half from him for targeting his knee while in a completely defenseless position …

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  3. Biggus Rickus

    Would you find it less problematic if he said “Trying to prevent concussions trumps everything”? Because that’s what he means by “player safety”. There’s no movement trying to prevent sprained ankles and knee injuries.

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  4. jollyrogerjay

    He also has a dislocated shoulder that will require surgery too.

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  5. It was a nasty hit, but it looked legal to me

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  6. Seems to me – and I can’t believe I’m typing this so I must be getting old…but seems to me they should just outlaw “kill shots.”

    Make it judgmental or whatever, but doing so would probably eliminate 50-75% of the unnecessary violence in the game.

    The AU defender was trailing the play and was beaten. He was not involved the in the play at that point and wasn’t going to make the tackle.

    Yes, this would have applied to the Quinton Dial cheap shot of Murray in the SECCG, but so be it.

    Have a good day,

    BD

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    • Jeff

      I may be getting old too, but I agree. I think a legal tackle needs to include an attempt to wrap arms. These kill shots where the defender hits with shoulder, elbows, and forearms need to be outlawed. The defender needs to be willing to share in the violence of the tackle. When the impact is spread over the area of the chest and torso, and the defender stays with the runner all the way to the ground, you don’t see as many injuries. If there aren’t some rules changes that in the past we might have called “sissy”, the game is going to go away completely in the future. I’ve even thought about, and I hesitate to say this, size limits by position.

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      • Don’t disagree with your points in general, but in this case it was a block, not a tackle. You’re not allowed to wrap the guy up and put him on the ground when blocking. That’s called holding. (Assuming the refs can be bothered to call it). 🙂

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  7. Dog in Fla

    As soon as the rocket scientists can affirmatively answer at least one of these questions and they can repeat the procedure more than once in clinical studies**, we can get rid of the targeting penalty because we can already replace ankles, knees and hips:

    “Will we ever grow replacement brains or do whole-brain transplants?”

    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/body/brain-transplants.html

    **

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  8. Macallanlover

    All CFB fans agree with trying to make the game safer, and no one wants legit football plays to be punished, but this is a fast game with moving parts from multiple players so there will never be unanimous concurrence on these decisions. This rule is administered much, much better now than that initial year which was just awful. Doesn’t mean the booth review will make decisions we may disagree with but I feel they are doing a very good job. Most fans agree with what they decide unless it involves their player/team It is fine line call that will always bee controversial.

    I wish they would change the name to something like “dangerous, high hit” and not use the term “targeting”. That would better communicate the purpose of the rule and drill it into players’ minds as they approach the contact point. Targeting to me always implied something dirty and malicious which very few players are guilty of. I rarely sees someone
    “target” a high hit, it seems the two players are in motion and one, or both, make a move that makes the contact illegal, but not intentional to cause harm. Being guilty of a mistake made at full seed is easier to swallow than being kicked out of the game for being dirty.

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  9. CB

    It’s ridiculous to me that a violent hit like that can be overturned. None of the targeting calls that Georgia has accumulated over the past few years have even been in the stratosphere of that one. Given the inconsistency of the rule I don’t think kids should be thrown out of games for targeting (allowing for exceptions). A 15 yard penalty should be more than enough to discourage players from helmet to helmet contact. In many of the cases at Georgia an illegal hit was almost unavoidable. I understand that the NCAA is trying to make up for years of negligence, but throwing kids out of games doesn’t make up for anything. It’s all about the PR.

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    • jollyrogerjay

      I agree, but I’d make it a 25 yard penalty with none of that half the distance crap on either end. Put the ball on the 2.

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  10. WarD Eagle

    Call me homer, but I think it was targeting; defenseless player and all that.

    Also agree with Bryant Denny. We should remove the helmets, make the pads softer, and make this a less violent game. I’ve always preferred the strength and athleticism to the violence.

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    • I’ll say 2 points – First, the fact that he has a dislocated shoulder tells me that the should is where the primary impact was, which argues in favor of it not being targeting. However….second point is that I’m stunned they overruled it. There was at least SOME helmet to helmet contact, and that’s the first time I can remember ever seeing it overturned when there was in fact some helmet to helmet contact, even if it was incidental.

      Agree about the violence tho. If they’re gonna make it illegal to light up a WR who is in a defenseless position trying to make a catch, these guys that are getting lit up with blindsided blocks (crack back, peel back, whatever you call them) are just as defenseless. So as much as well know that more rules just means more things for the refs to screw up, it would make sense to put in some protection in those scenarios.

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  11. 69Dawg

    I’m back. Since the dust seems to have settled I’ll jump in on this. If the the CFB rules guys truly wanted to make it safer they would do a couple of things, none of which I expect to see them do.

    They would use the rugby/soccer rules via yellow cards on personal fouls not just unsportsman like conduct. Two yellows and you are gone for the game. This would be subject to a narrow review to insure our cracker jack refs actually called the penalty on the right player.
    They would outlaw all crack back and blindside blocks, especially any block behind a play. The blocker should not be allowed to launch period.
    Even if the ref thinks it is targeting he should first call it a personal foul unnecessary roughness, so the penalty and the yellow card would stand. If it is targeting then the player is gone.
    They should outlaw the cut block. Screw the Nerds and the service academies. If you can’t recruit lineman big enough to block the defense then go play Div 1-AA (tech really has not excuse except that the Johnson loves to inflict pain on his opponents).

    These rules would decrease the overall injuries and make the game safer. I saw where the Seahawks are now proponents of rugby tackling since the tackler does not lead with his head but actually is taught to tackle with his shoulder to the midsection of the runner while wrapping him up and either lifting him and planting him or rolling. The instructional videos were very good the upside of this was that you can run drills on it without full contact.

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  12. Lrgk9

    It would put Fish Fry in retirement bit a helmet or shoulder pad to a knee s/b targeting.

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  13. Macallanlover

    Think he means a cut block, which is technically legal, but immoral. If NCAA is serious about player safety they would make it illegal to dive at players’ knees and risk both their careers and ability to walk normally. To defend their knees players have to drop their hands to fend off the block and thus unable to tackle a runner in close proximity.

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