Joe Christensen covered Major League Baseball for 15 years, including three seasons at the Baltimore Sun and eight at the Star Tribune, before switching to the college football beat. He’s a Faribault, Minn., native who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 1996. He covered Jim Wacker’s Gophers for the Minnesota Daily and also wrote about USC, UCLA and the Rose Bowl for the Riverside Press-Enterprise before getting this chance to cover football again.

Email Joe to talk about the Gophers.

Gophers disconcerted about snap-count penalties

Posted by: Michael Rand under College football Updated: September 6, 2012 - 8:23 AM

BY PHIL MILLER    

     Josh Campion jumped too early on a potential fourth-quarter touchdown drive Thursday, costing the Gophers five critical yards and enraging his offensive-line teammates.
     They weren't upset at Campion. They were angry at the Rebels' defense -- and the officials.
     "Our guys were pretty mad," offensive coordinator Matt Limegrover said. "They said (the reason for the false start) was exactly the same as the first time."
     That reason? "Disconcerting signals," as referee Dan Capron described the penalty in the second quarter.
     On crucial snaps, Rebels defenders were imitating the Gophers' snap count, several Gophers said, trying to confuse the offense and get them to jump offsides.
     "It should have (been called) more than once," coach Jerry Kill said.
     The first instance came in the second quarter, on a third-and-two from the UNLV 25. Offensive linemen jumped early, but officials ruled that UNLV's defense was intentionally mimicking Gray's calls, giving the Gophers five yards and a first down.
     "You preach to your kids, hang in there, have discipline. Then they're over there yelling out your snap count," Limegrover said. "It's hard to focus through that, no matter who you are."
     It was third-and-two once more, this time from the UNLV 15 in the fourth quarter, when it happened again. This time, the penalty on Campion stood, and when quarterback MarQueis Gray's run fell three yards short of a first down, the Gophers had to settle for a field goal. If the ploy was intentional, it worked.
     "I don't know if they were doing it intentionally," Gray said. "I only heard it one time. The rest, I wasn't paying attention to what was being yelled."
     There is plenty of noise at the line of scrimmage, Kill said, and sometimes confusion is inevitable and unintentional. "But it's happening more and more," he said. The NFL even warned its teams a year ago that mimicking snap counts wouldn't be tolerated.
     "But defensively right now, a lot of people are shifting fronts and stuff on you to confuse the blocking schemes, and they'll get up there and (yell) 'Move, move, move,' " Kill said. "If you're in the middle of a snap count, and if your quarterback is not real decisive in his snap count, it sounds the same as 'move, move.' "
     The Gophers have even experienced that confusion in practices, when their own defense is making calls.
     The solution? Modern technology, Kill joked.
     "If we had a cell phone, we'd get everything communicated, because (players are) on them all the time," Kill said. "But when them actually talking to each other, that seems to be difficult sometimes."
 

ADVERTISEMENT

Houston 13 3rd Qtr
Pittsburgh 24
San Diego 10/23/14 7:25 PM
Denver
Detroit 10/26/14 8:30 AM
Atlanta
Buffalo 10/26/14 12:00 PM
NY Jets
St. Louis 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
Houston 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Tennessee
Minnesota 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Seattle 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Carolina
Baltimore 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Cincinnati
Miami 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Chicago 10/26/14 12:00 PM
New England
Philadelphia 10/26/14 3:05 PM
Arizona
Oakland 10/26/14 3:25 PM
Cleveland
Indianapolis 10/26/14 3:25 PM
Pittsburgh
Green Bay 10/26/14 7:30 PM
New Orleans
Chicago 98 FINAL
Cleveland 107
New Orleans 88 FINAL
Washington 84
Milwaukee 120 4th Qtr 0:42
New York 107
Philadelphia 88 FINAL
Brooklyn 99
Charlotte 108 1st OT 2:45
Atlanta 108
Sacramento 60 3rd Qtr
San Antonio 49
Memphis 55 3rd Qtr 9:04
Dallas 62
Tampa Bay 0 1st Prd 7:20
Edmonton 0
Arkansas State 10/21/14 7:00 PM
Louisiana
Connecticut 10/23/14 6:00 PM
(18) East Carolina
Miami-Florida 10/23/14 7:00 PM
Virginia Tech
So Florida 10/24/14 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Troy 10/24/14 6:30 PM
South Alabama
BYU 10/24/14 8:00 PM
Boise State
(6) Oregon 10/24/14 9:00 PM
California
North Texas 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Rice
UAB 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Arkansas
Rutgers 10/25/14 11:00 AM
(16) Nebraska
Maryland 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Wisconsin
Texas 10/25/14 11:00 AM
(11) Kansas State
Minnesota 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Illinois
Memphis 10/25/14 11:00 AM
SMU
North Carolina 10/25/14 11:30 AM
Virginia
San Jose St 10/25/14 12:00 PM
Navy
Northern Ill 10/25/14 12:00 PM
Eastern Mich
(25) UCLA 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Colorado
Akron 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Ball State
Massachusetts 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Toledo
Ohio U 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Western Mich
Ga Southern 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Georgia State
Kent State 10/25/14 1:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
Oregon State 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Stanford
Fla Atlantic 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(23) Marshall
Louisiana Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Southern Miss
(1) Miss State 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Kentucky
Georgia Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Pittsburgh
(22) West Virginia 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Oklahoma State
Texas Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(10) TCU
Michigan 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(8) Michigan State
Boston College 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Wake Forest
Central Mich 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Buffalo
Vanderbilt 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Missouri
Old Dominion 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Western Ky
UNLV 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Utah State
Temple 10/25/14 4:00 PM
UCF
(15) Arizona 10/25/14 5:00 PM
Washington St
Texas-El Paso 10/25/14 6:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Wyoming 10/25/14 6:00 PM
Colorado State
Syracuse 10/25/14 6:00 PM
(21) Clemson
Texas State 10/25/14 6:00 PM
ULM
(3) Ole Miss 10/25/14 6:15 PM
(24) LSU
(4) Alabama 10/25/14 6:30 PM
Tennessee
So Carolina 10/25/14 6:30 PM
(5) Auburn
(13) Ohio State 10/25/14 7:00 PM
Penn State
(20) USC 10/25/14 9:00 PM
(19) Utah
(14) Arizona State 10/25/14 9:45 PM
Washington
Nevada 10/25/14 10:59 PM
Hawaii
Ottawa 6 FINAL
Hamilton 16
Montreal 20 FINAL
Toronto 12
Calgary 33 FINAL
Winnipeg 23
Edmonton 24 FINAL
Saskatchewan 19
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 season     
Aug 28 - vs. E. Illinois 6 pmX42-20
Sep 6 - vs. M. Tennessee St. 2:30 pmX35-24
Sep 13 - at TCU 3 pmX30-7
Sep 20 - vs. San Jose St. 3 p.m.X24-7
Sep 27 - at Michigan 2:30 pmX30-14
Oct 11 - vs. Northwestern 11 amX24-17
Oct 18 - vs. Purdue 11 amX39-38
Oct 25 - at Illinois 11 am
Nov 8 - vs. Iowa TBA
Nov 15 - vs. Ohio State TBA
Nov 22 - at Nebraska TBA
Nov 29 - at Wisconsin TBA

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How will the Vikings and Gophers do this weekend?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT