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Kurt Kragthorpe and Kyle Goon
Kurt Kragthorpe and Kyle Goon cover the Pac-12 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
Arizona (Tucson Citizen)
» Video collection: UA hoops incoming freshmen highlights
» Pac-12 Media Days, Day 2
» Photos: UA sports Throwback Thursday Jared Tevis
» Arizona Wildcats' Lalang honored as top scholar-athlete

Arizona St. (Arizona Republic)
» ASU picked to finish third in Pac-12 South
» ASU All Access: One-on-one with Todd Graham
» Tough scheduling could benefit Pac-12 teams
» All Access: Graham confident in the offense

California (East Bay Tribune)
» Coach Sonny Dykes promises Cal Bears will be competitive
» Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott disputes remarks by Big 12's Bob Bowlsby
» DirecTV still saying no to Pac-12 Network
» Coach Sonny Dykes admits to worry about Cal's secondary

Colorado (Denver Post)
» Colorado's MacIntyre at Pac-12 media days: "We will be improved"
» Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott: league "well positioned" for playoffs
» CU Buffs picked 6th in Pac-12 football media poll; Oregon the favorite
» Greg Henderson ready to etch name with list of CU's four-year starters

Oregon (The Oregonian)
» Pac-12 Media Days: Complete coverage by Oregon, Oregon State reporters on Day 2 (links)
» Vin Lananna shares vision for track and field 'paradigm shift' in United States: Video
» Vin Lananna says it's time to make professional track a reality in the U.S.
» Pac-12 Media Days Audible: Tyson Alger and Gina Mizell wrap up the two-day event (video)

Oregon State (Corvallis Gazette-Times)
» Oregon State hires longtime trainer hired Fred Tedeschi
» Beavers hire Mark Massari as deputy athletics director
» Oregon State hands out Bennys to top athletes, coaches and teams
» OSU fishing: MacDonald, Martinez win conference tournament

Stanford (San Jose Mercury-News)
» Stanford's Evan Crower emerges as Kevin Hogan's backup
» Stanford's David Shaw open to San Jose State game at Levi's Stadium
» Pac 12 football: Stanford reacts to being picked second
» Incoming Stanford freshman sets national prep record in decathlon

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)
» UW injury notes: Freshman Jaimie Bryant takes medical retirement
» UW's Chris Petersen on Troy Williams, Jeff Lindquist, Budda Baker, Oregon and more
» Mailbag: Why didn't Storm guard Noelle Quinn play?
» Video: UW's Hau'oli Kikaha at Pac-12 media days

Washington State (Spokane Spokesman-Review)
» Fleet Dominic Davis says he'll go to WSU
» Shock want to keep momentum rolling
» Tyler Bruggman to Louisville
» Spreading the word about football season isn't new



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