Originally Published: Nov 23, 2009 12:33 PM CDT
The clock mismanagement by LSU Coach Les Miles in the loss to Ole Miss this past Saturday was flabbergasting. And it was to a lot of emotional Bengal Tiger football fans, many of whom have been wearing the former OSU coach out on the internet.
They are all over him about a series of mistakes he made as LSU was driving for a potential game- winning score. Miles has one of the best field goal kickers in the nation and a three-pointer would have given Miles and LSU another close-game win.
The play-calling was inexplicable. But more so was the fact that he let the clock dwindle down by wasting precious time, that saw a Hail Mary type pass actually be completed, resulting in LSU being in field goal range.
But with one second remaining all his QB could do was attempt to spike the ball. Of course the game ended with football fans everywhere wondering if what they saw or heard really happened. Veteran broadcasters Verne Lunquidst and Gary Danielson were completely dumbfounded by the baffling series of late-game decision by Miles.
For some reason he granted an interview to CBS as he walked off the field. He didn't have much of a coherent answer for CBS sideline reporter Tracy Wolfson:
"Coach, what happened on that last play?" she asked. "How come you didn't try for the field goal?" Miles' reply to the question about what he was thinking as the final seconds ticked off the clock was confusing, at best. "We couldn't get it lined up fast enough," he told Wolfson. "You know, we knew we were gonna run out of time???that ??? that ??? that was the issue. We probably had to call ??? we tried to get the field goal team on ??? they were down there under ???"We could not have spiked it, certainly."
Miles has been credited for years with so-called gutsy last minute play-calling, although he doesn't actually call the plays but he's responsible as the plays always go through the head coach. From my vantage point and from the vantage point of many coaches I've spoken with throughout the years, some of those "gutsy" calls were unsound but somehow worked out.
But the situation outlined above is one that has the LSU nation both confounded and livid at the same time.
In the words of former OSU coach Pat Jones, Miles confusion/indecisiveness/mismanagement left onlookers "bumfuzzled."