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Kurt Kragthorpe and Kyle Goon
Kurt Kragthorpe and Kyle Goon cover University of Utah sports teams for The Salt Lake Tribune.

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Refs may have aided Oregon State’s win with onside kick call

Oregon State dominated the first 58 minutes of its 10-7 win over No. 13 Wisconsin on Saturday at Reser Stadium. Its defense was relentless. OSU forced two turnovers, sacked Danny O’Brien three times and forced the Maryland transfer quarterback into a dreadful 20-of-38 passing day that yielded a mere 172 yards.

Still, the Badgers had a chance to win. After scoring a touchdown with 1:31 left in the game, the Badgers lined up an onside kick. The ball dribbled forward and was recovered by kicker Kyle French. By rule, the ball must travel 10 yards before the kicking team can recover it. Initially, Wisconsin was awarded the ball but a booth review led to a reversal and Oregon State was able to run out the clock for a win in what coach Mike Riley called the biggest non-conference game ever played in Corvallis.

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On TV, Fox Sports officials analyst Mike Pereira advocated for a reversal of the call, after multiple angles showed French grabbing the ball shy of the 45-yard-line. Cool. Happy day for the Beavers. Game over.

But not so fast. The reversal seemed questionable at the time. It appeared to be moving backwards when French got to it, meaning its path was reversed (presumably by an Oregon State player). That’s the case Pereira made in a mea culpa on FoxSports.com posted early Sunday morning.

The kicked ball was going forward the entire time and when it reached the 45-yard line, it suddenly went backward. After looking at it several times, it appears that Oregon State receiver Tyrequek Zimmerman may have touched the ball first. Watching again, I could see his fingers going backward before French recovered the ball at the 44.

The other thing I want to emphasize is this: Indisputable visual evidence. I talk about it all it time and how that is what’s required to overturn a call on the field. After watching the replays, I really don’t think there was indisputable evidence to overturn the call made on the field. From every angle available, there is a short period of time where the ball disappears.

Wrote ESPN Wisconsin writer Tom Lea of the play: "Unless we’re dealing with the football equivalent of the magic bullet theory, that probably means an Oregon State player hit it. It should have been Wisconsin ball with approximately a minute and a half to play."

The Badgers would have needed to go about 25 yards to get in field goal range, perfectly plausible despite the fact Wisconsin had traveled a total of 207 yards and was 2-of-14 on third downs.

One can only imagine the scene in Corvallis if the Beavers had let that win get away. Thanks to an unbelievable day of defense, however, and maybe some help from the officiating crew, Beaver Nation got to celebrate.

— Bill Oram

PAC-12 Links
Links from around the Pac-12
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» Arizona Wildcats Video Extra: UA football
» Greg Hansen's Video Notebook
» Arizona Wildcats Video Extra...Arizona football makes the most out of Spring practice

Arizona St. (Arizona Republic)
» ASU hockey tops Robert Morris to claim ACHA crown
» ASU baseball drops series against Tennessee
» Cancer fails to pin ASU's Eskam or derail his big plans for life
» Late errors doom ASU baseball in tough loss to Tennessee

California (East Bay Tribune)
» Cal women's tennis team stuns host Stanford, claims first Pac-12 title.
» Cal's Sonny Dykes gets advice from veteran coaches after 1-11 first season
» Cal football: Espitia hopes he's found home at linebacker
» Local digest: Longtime Stanford diving coach Rick Schavone is retiring

Colorado (Denver Post)
» Colorado Classics: Darian Hagan, former CU Buffs quarterback
» CU Buffs backup QB Jordan Gehrke impresses during spring drills
» Fleet freshman receivers shine in CU Buffs' spring game
» Spring games are important, Colorado's Mike MacIntyre says

Oregon (The Oregonian)
» Canzano: Oregon Ducks coach Mark Helfrich says there is no user's manual to being a head coach
» Edward Cheserek makes a triumphant debut at Hayward Field in the Oregon Relays
» UO women's 4x100 flies to No. 2 in school history at the Mt. SAC Relays
» Oregon Ducks' multi-dimensional Oshay Dunmore hopes reunion with Erik Chinander ends in a breakout spring

Oregon State (Corvallis Gazette-Times)
» OSU men's basketball: De Carolis statement on men's basketball
» Oregon State's tournament success caps a remarkably quick turnaround
» OSU gymnastics: Beavers headed to Penn State for NCAA regionals
» OSU wins seventh straight racquetball national title

Stanford (San Jose Mercury-News)
» Cal women's tennis team stuns host Stanford, claims first Pac-12 title.
» Stanford's Olympic diving coach Rick Schavone retires
» Local digest: Longtime Stanford diving coach Rick Schavone is retiring
» Local digest: Saint Mary's men's golf leads at WCC tournament

UCLA (Los Angeles Daily News)
» UCLA Football Notebook: Running back Malcolm Jones loses appeal for extra season
» College Football: Position coach Adrian Klemm says UCLA offensive line a work in progress
» COLLEGE FOOTBALL: Improving UCLA has questions to answer during preseason football camp
» COLLEGE FOOTBALL: UCLA's prized recruit Eddie Vanderdoes cleared to play by NCAA after leaving Notre Dame

USC (Los Angeles Daily News)
» USC Football Notebook: Marqise Lee's injury not too serious
» USC Football Notebook: QBs Max Wittek, Cody Kessler present dilemma for Trojans coach Lane Kiffin
» USC FOOTBALL NOTEBOOK: Former UCLA coach Rick Neuheisel thinks Trojans might not miss QB Matt Barkley
» USC FOOTBALL NOTEBOOK: Dion Bailey says it's 'now or never'

Washington (Seattle Times)
» California avoids sweep, beats Huskies in baseball
» Jeff Lindquist shines but UW quarterback competition to continue
» Deontae Cooper, Lavon Coleman, Jeff Lindquist shine in UW spring game
» Videos: Deontae Cooper, Jonathan Smith after UW's spring game

Washington State (Spokane Spokesman-Review)
» Spokane Shock vs. Cleveland
» Shock lose on last play
» Spring Practice Report: Day 11
» Video: Idaho's Petrino after scrimmage



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