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Protect Your Unit Week 3 Results: Sad Field Goals

Not all Sad Field Goals meet the official definition. But they're still sad.

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

(DISCLAIMER: This contest is for entertainment purposes only. No actual money is being wagered.)

Among's many contributions to the world's enjoyment of college football is the Sad Field Goal, which is defined as:

a) An FBS team
b) down by 20 points or more
c) in the 4th quarter
d) makes a field goal.

One game this week was impacted by a Sad Field Goal. Trailing by 24 points in the fourth quarter, Tennessee lined up for a SFG that would have have cut the Sooners' lead to 21, matching the point spread and turning the game into a push. (And eschewing any possibility of winning ATS by not going for a touchdown.) The kick missed, preserving OU's victory against the spread. This cost players lrdnorman and iwaswrongabouthowell, who had Tennessee +21.

Which raises a philosophical question: is a sad missed field goal even sadder than a sad field goal?

There were other cases which didn't meet the technical definition above, but which decided wagers, and certainly were sad:

Trailing by 17 to Boise State, Connecticut opted not to kick a field goal. A fourth-down pass play failed, preserving kendom's win on Boise State -16. Even though the Huskies kicked a Sad Field Goal in Bob Diaco's first game.

UMass lost a chance to upset Vanderbilt when a chip-shot field goal went wide left. This was so sad it moved an opposing player to give the kicker a hug. Also needing a hug were LeavittTown and ULismyhothotsex, who had UMass to win at +575.

Iowa lost to rival Iowa State when their own coach called timeout during a missed kick. The timeout gave ISU's kicker a second chance, which he converted. RyanTSmith won on Iowa State +340.

And since we're on the subject: stop icing the kicker, dammit. Studies have shown that icing the kicker has zero impact on field goal success. If anything, it's counterproductive: one NFL kicker said that when a timeout is called during a kick, he kicks the ball straight to see what the wind does, then adjusts for the real kick.

A timeout takes about two minutes. Two minutes times 80,000 people in the stadium, and one million watching it home, works out to over 4 years of wasted time. Icing the kicker is bad for the global economy. Stop it.

It'll happen. Someday soon, a coach will realize he can ice a kicker by NOT calling a time out. The icing move is so commonplace that it would be more surprising to not do it. Surely kickers are now trained to expect that extra little wait time before a important kick. If you picked the right spot to take that away, I bet it you'd increase the chances of a miss. Time outs on field goal kicks would disappear overnight. We can hope.

OK, I'm done ranting. There's one more field goal to talk about: Houston's fourth-quarter field goal against BYU pushed the total number of points to 58, making dwsidell31's Over 57 bet a winner. This isn't really a sad field goal, as it cut the deficit to 8 points with plenty of time to score again, but it ended up being meaningless except to the Over/Under bet.

Other wagers of note:

ULismyhothotsex staked a whopping $220 on Pittsburgh to cover -26 points versus FIU, which they did not. FIU is terrible, but 26 points on the road is a lot to ask of a perennial Birmingham Bowl team. This has to go down as the Floyd's Money Team Degenerate Bet of the Week.

This being a USF blog, lots of us lost on USF. The less said about that game, the better. kendom and tacoman206 are the only ones who put money on the Wolfpack.

ucscott caught a tough break on Penn State -3.5. Penn State -3 was available at other points of the week, and that half a point was the difference between losing and pushing. (PSU won 13-10.)

The always-popular "bet against Skip Holtz" play blew up when Louisiana Tech routed North Texas.

But it wasn't all bad news. A lot of you won big on East Carolina over Virginia Tech, West Virginia over Maryland, and Cincinnati over Toledo. Let's take a look at the standings:

kendom 1392.53
collin 1211.73
diddybull32 1130.46
zls44 1129.04
iwaswrongabouthowell 1120.46
jthoma11 1093.64
ucscott 1075.66
RyanTSmith 1063.18
dsidwell31 1034.59
ElliotMoore 1026.18
tacoman206 1007.27
andrewpina 997.73
DaGata 977.14
GaryStephen 974.53
LrdNorman 973.66
JimUSFSig 954.82
shadow68 922.73
danj725 910.46
leavitttown 891.98
JasonLoughren 886.36
Snafu13 855.82
ULismyhothotsex 848.69
chuckycrater 774.37

The Randolph & Mortimer Spite Bet of the Week goes to zls44 for betting $1.11 on Southern Miss - same as their won-lost record. Ouch.

As always, the first set of lines will be posted at Monday night. If you'd like to join the contest, this is your last chance: you have to take Week 2 and Week 3 as your bye weeks, and pick every week going forward. But you are still eligible to win the Grand Prize, which we'll talk about a little later. Email me to get a login.