Did officials miss targeting call in Oregon’s upset over Ohio State?
No. 3 Ohio State became the second top-five team to suffer an upset this season, losing 35-28 to No. 12 Oregon to start the season 1-1.
The Buckeyes struggled on both sides of the ball, giving up 269 rushing yards and three touchdowns on the ground, spearheaded by CJ Verdell’s 161-yard, three-touchdown performance. Ohio State’s offensive unit put up 612 yards, but it couldn’t convert on third or fourth down, going 6 of 15 and 2 of 5 on conversion attempts, respectively.
Despite their struggles, the Buckeyes had a chance to tie the game at 35 on the team’s third-to-last drive. Facing third-and-20 from the Buckeyes’ own 41, Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud completed a 2-yard pass to receiver Chris Olave. Oregon linebacker Noah Sewell appeared to lower the crown of his helmet in the process of tackling Olave, which would have given Ohio State 15 yards and a fresh set of downs.
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Olave was low to the ground, but it seemed like a textbook case of leading with the helmet, even if Sewell didn’t target Olave’s head or neck area. Considering Ohio State had scored on each of its two previous drives and three of its past four, the penalty very well could have swung the game in the Buckeyes’ favor. But officials informed the Fox telecast that they had reviewed the play while addressing injuries to Olave and Sewell, determining there was no targeting on the play.
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For what it’s worth, Twitter was (mostly) uniform in its agreement that Sewell had committed the penalty:
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Regardless, the Ducks got the ball back two more times, ending each of their final two drives with a punt. The Buckeyes had multiple chances to tie the game after the controversial no-call, but their drives ended with an interception and the end of regulation.
Article Found At – Sporting News