Sunday, November 8, 2015


Maybe you weren't convinced. Maybe Michigan-Michigan State and the Punt That Never Should Have Been didn't convince you. Maybe you weren't swayed by The Return From Beyond Time And The Rulebook that saved Miami against Duke.

Maybe you remained, through all that, one of those poor deluded souls who continue to buy the NFL's hype, continue to believe that the No Fun League has it all over the "amateur" version they play on the campuses of America's universities.

One word for that: Pffft.

I say that because if Michigan-Michigan State wasn't the best football game I've seen this year, the one they played Saturday down in Oxford, Miss., was. Forget the fact that Oxford, Miss., is one of the great atmospheres in college football, or that the venue (Vaught-Hemingway Stadium) is one of the great venue names in the sport. It was what happened there that mattered.

Arkansas and Ole Miss didn't go seven OTs this time, the way they did in 2001 in another of the great games in college football history. They only went one. But it was a memorable one.

I mean, first you had a game that swayed back and forth all day, like two boxers standing toe-to-toe throwing bombs that made the knees buckle but never made either go down. Then came overtime, and Ole Miss taking the lead yet again. And then, fourth-and-25 for Arkansas, Ole Miss about to close it out ... and this happens.

Crazy. Magnificent. Crazy magnificent.

The best part, of course, is that Arkansas likely had no business even hanging with Ole Miss, let alone pulling off a stone miracle to beat the Rebels. The even better part was it happened again later in the evening, when a Nebraska team that had just lost to Purdue somehow hung with unbeaten Michigan State long enough to pull off its own miracle -- i.e., a winning touchdown pass that shouldn't have counted because the receiver stepped out of bounds on his own and then stepped back in.

This morning Sparty is wailing over that one, and Ole Miss is shaking their heads over the facemask that gave Arkansas yet another last chance on Bret Bielema's daring call to go for the win with the two-point conversion. But you know what?

Put 'em away like you're supposed to, and neither of those plays matter.

Know what else?

Thank God they didn't put 'em away. 'Cause it was great theater -- and the kind of November football, sorry, you just don't get in the NFL.

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