It’s Official: More on the blocked kick rule

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, September 30, 2003

It was good to see Coach Daryl Daye’s Nicholls State Colonels got back on the winning path Saturday as they demolished Texas Southern 64 to 5.

After three straight long road trips and close losses, I’m sure the team and coaches were glad to be playing at home again.

Old friend and longtime Natchezian &uot;bone man&uot; Gene Taylor asked me to explain the rule covering a play in the LSU-Georgia game last week.

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A field goal attempt was partially blocked, and the ball rolled dead somewhere inside the defending team’s 20.

Unlike after a punt, the ball was next put in play at the point of the previous snap (called the previous spot) with the defending team in possession of the ball.

The rules covering a missed field goal attempt are similar to those covering any other scrimmage kick (punt) with the result that if the ball becomes dead in or beyond the opponent’s end zone, it is next placed in play from that team’s 20-yard line.

The exception for missed field goal attempts is covered in NCAA Rule 8, Section 4, Article 2b which states &uot;After an unsuccessful field goal attempt that has crossed the neutral zone, untouched by Team B (the defending team) after it has crossed the neutral zone, will next be put in play at the previous spot. If the previous spot was between team B’s 20-yard line and the goal line, the ball shall be put in play at team B’s 20-yard line. Otherwise, all rules pertaining to scrimmage kicks apply.&uot;

Thanks, Gene, for the question.

I didn’t see anything in the LSU-Mississippi State game that raised any questions about officiating or rules. Plenty of other questions were unanswered, of course.

Somewhere in an earlier column I mentioned probably the most difficult type of football game to officiate is one between two badly mismatched teams.

When one team gets so far ahead, and I’m talking about 50 or more points, the tendency is likely to be that the losing team becomes frustrated and the winning team becomes complacent and careless &045; a sure formula for trouble.

There are real good coaches who are able to keep their players focused in either instance, but many others fall short.

The losers among them always tend to blame the officials, and the winners among them who run up the score on weaker teams will fall on lean times, and we all know that what goes around comes around.

One of my pet peeves is to read a high school game with a 60 or 70 to nothing score and to see that the same one or two players scored all of the touchdowns.

College scouts see when this is happening, and I know they put more stock in the kids who play in tough games week after week.

Perhaps this is why so few of this state’s Dandy Dozen make it in Division I college football.

This week I plan to file a daily report from the Southern Farm Bureau Classic Golf Tournament in Madison, and I look forward to some interesting days. And that’s official.

Al Graning is a former SEC official and former Natchez resident. You can reach him at