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Oklahoma’s Caleb Williams converts on 4th down by taking ball from his running back

Watch it back in real-time.

Watch it again in real-time.
Picture: AP

With Oklahoma up simply 5 within the fourth quarter, coach Lincoln Riley determined to play aggressively, preserving the offense on the sphere for a 4th-and-1 on OU’s 46-yard line. The Sooners’ protection had been pecked aside (buh-dum-tss) within the second half, and the Jayhawks’ final drive previous to this play noticed Kansas stroll away with six factors on 5 performs and fewer than two minutes taken off the sport clock. So this was a ballsy name from Riley. There was simply three and a half minutes left within the sport. Yeah, Kansas had all of their timeouts nonetheless, however you gotta belief your protection, proper? I assume the thought was that the quick discipline wouldn’t give Kansas sufficient time to wind down the clock, so even when they did rating a landing, it’s probably that Oklahoma would’ve had time to mount a drive of their very own, however I digress.

As halfback Kennedy Brooks takes the handoff from his quarterback, it appears to be like like Riley’s aggression is about to backfire… Brooks will get stuffed… He’s met on the line by a Jayhawk linebacker and is being pushed again… welp, that is clearly leading to a turnover on downs, proper?

WRONG!

[Caleb Williams has entered the chat]

Williams, like a guardian angel despatched to guard the sanctity of Oklahoma’s undefeated season, strips the ball from his personal working again (!) and takes the ball for a primary down! I’ve by no means seen something like this. By no means.

(Ed. be aware: Us neither, pal — Wealthy O., Chris B.)

In case you’re a Kansas fan, you have been in all probability pondering at this second: “Is that even authorized?” The refs apparently did, too, and reviewed it. And sure, it’s completely authorized. However there are another questions I’ve concerning this play.

For one, how did Brooks, the working again, know to let go of the ball?! There was no whistle, that means the play wasn’t lifeless, clearly. He was being dragged down by Kansas LB Wealthy Miller. You’d suppose the very last thing you’d need to do whereas being tackled is let go of the soccer, so why would he let go? Certain, it’s fourth down, so that you’re going to show the ball over anyway, however wouldn’t you need to simply take your licks and hope your protection can maintain?

My thought was Brooks might have had some sight on Williams whereas he was being tackled, however that play occurred so quick that I’d be shocked if Brooks thought to himself: “Hey, somebody is attempting to strip the ball from me. Oh, it’s my quarterback. There’s no one round him. If I give the ball to him, he might run for the primary,” and put all that collectively earlier than hitting the turf.

Nicely, take into account me shocked:

There’s a lot that might’ve gone mistaken with that play: The handoff needed to be clear. There needed to be no different Kansas defenders within the neighborhood, and the Kansas defenders who have been bearing down on Brooks all needed to miss the handoff. Fortunately, all of it got here collectively and gave us one of the jaw-dropping fourth-down conversions of the season.

Coming into this sport, the 2021 Heisman race was murkier than the Ohio River. Everybody we thought would compete for the {hardware} is taking part in poorly and new names have snuck into the dialog. Williams has taken management of the job because the alternative for preseason Heisman hopeful Spencer Rattler.

He’s saved the Sooners undefeated with wins over Texas, TCU, and as of right this moment, Kansas. Even when his staff trailed 17-7 within the third quarter, Williams clawed his staff again from the brink of defeat to dominate the Jayhawks within the second half. Williams accomplished every of his first seven passes of the second half and threw two touchdowns, ran for another, and though he did throw his first interception of the season this sport, he greater than made up for the error by main Oklahoma on five-straight landing drives to finish the sport.

What’s loopy is that this wasn’t even one of the best fourth-down conversion of the quarter for Oklahoma. About 5 minutes earlier, the Sooners transformed a 4th-and- 3 on this Williams TD run.

Williams made two unobstructed males miss behind the road of scrimmage after which took it to the home. Oklahoma 35, Kansas 23. That ought to’ve been the play that drew all the eye from followers, however Williams needed to go forward and provides us one thing much more loopy, spectacular, and by no means earlier than seen.

Simply give Williams the Heisman already. He’s a magician on the market.

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