Pac 12

Brilliant: Oregon State and Mike Riley Going for Two

| by Dwight Jaynes

Loved it. The only thing that would have been better was if they’d not have called a timeout first. The timeout benefits the defense more than the offense.

Why go for 2?

  • I love the fact that people call Mike Riley a gambler for going for the two-point conversion. But I think he’d have been a bigger gambler if he’d not done it. The Beavers were just about done, defensively. They were unable to stop the Huskies. At the same time, they’ve got a very undependable place-kicker. I believe, all in all, as good as the  Beavers are near the goal line, the percentages were actually higher for them to go for two than to try to kick the point to tie the game, then turn around — while going first in the third overtime — and later win the game.
  • They’d have been going first in the third overtime — a huge disadvantage. When you go first, you don’t know how many points you’re going to need to win or tie.
  • Don’t forget, beginning in the third overtime, teams have to go for two after every touchdown — why not do it in the “bottom of the second” and win the game?
  • I love that Riley was able to come to terms with the fact that his team was “having a hard time stopping them.” Some would say that by not just tying the game with a kick and not moving on to the next overtime, he had lost faith in his team. I disagree — he was doing what was best for his tired team and not letting his heart get in the way of a smart decision.
  • Riley went through the same thing a few years ago in a multiple-overtime game at LSU and kicked — only to have his kicker miss. It was a bad call and I said so at the time. Same situation — he had a kicker who was inconsistent (at least on that night) and a tired team. Go for the win when you get a chance!
  • Hey, one play from the three-yard line to win a road game? If you have any confidence in your offense and your play calling, you’ll take that every time. I think more coaches, if they had the nerve, should go for the two-pointer.

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