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Larry Brown Sports Tagline. Brown Bag it, Baby.
#pounditSunday, November 28, 2021

Stories by Larry Brown:

Oklahoma upset with reporter taking video of sad Caleb Williams

Caleb Williams dejected

Some Oklahoma personnel were upset with a reporter who tried to record video of Caleb Williams sulking after the Sooners’ 37-33 loss to rival Oklahoma State in the Bedlam game on Saturday night.

247 Sports reporter Brandon Marcello went over to Oklahoma’s bench to record video of a dejected Williams after the game. Marcello was quickly met by some personnel that tried to push him away and prevent him from filming the young quarterback.

After the incident with Marcello, some staffers formed a bit of a protective wall around Williams to block the QB from being recorded.

Williams is a freshman who became Oklahoma’s starting quarterback midway through the season. He went 20/39 for 252 yards and three touchdown passes. He also rushed for 36 yards. But it wasn’t enough as his Sooners fell to their rivals.

Not only did the loss hit Williams hard, but he was probably extra upset over the ending. He threw three straight incompletions and was sacked to end Oklahoma’s comeback effort.

Lincoln Riley officially shuts down LSU rumors

Lincoln Riley in a hat and headset

Just because his team lost to rival Oklahoma State in the Bedlam rivalry game does not mean Lincoln Riley is about to ditch his team.

Riley shut down rumors about him possibly taking the LSU job once and for all following his Oklahoma Sooners’ 37-33 loss to the Cowboys on Saturday night.

“I’m not going to be the next coach at LSU,” Riley said.

LSU is firing Ed Orgeron and seeking a replacement. One report said that the Tigers made a massive offer to Riley.

Riley is already at a school where he can recruit and win. Oklahoma pays him well and has a supportive fan base and administration. Plus they’re already heading to the SEC anyway. Leaving wouldn’t make a lot of sense, and it seems like he has decided that is the case.

Riley’s Sooners are now 10-2 and have lost twice since their 9-0 start. Oklahoma has gone 55-10 in five seasons under Riley, who took over for Bob Stoops after the 2016 season.

Photo: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

Mario Cristobal heading to Miami but not for reason you think

Mario Cristobal in an Oregon shirt

Mario Cristobal and his Oregon Ducks pulled off a big win in the Civil War rivalry game against Oregon State on Saturday, and Cristobal delivered some somber news afterwards.

The Miami native said he would be flying from Oregon to Florida after the game to visit his mother, who he said was ill.

Cristobal is in his fourth season as Oregon’s head coach and has the Ducks 10-2 after a 38-29 win over the Beavers. The 51-year-old was an all-conference player at Miami from 1989-1992. He was a graduate assistant there from 1998-2000 and an offensive position coach from 2004-2006. He coached FIU in Miami from 2007-2012. All in all, Cristobal has strong Miami ties.

Some will question the timing of Cristobal’s trip, especially considering recent reports. Oregon fans though will take him at his word and offer prayers for his family.

Oregon is set to face Utah next week in the Pac-12 Championship Game. They will be seeking revenge following their bad loss to the Utes last week.

Photo: Nov 23, 2019; Tempe, AZ, USA; Oregon Ducks head coach Mario Cristobal against the Arizona State Sun Devils at Sun Devil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Video: Nick Saban was atypically giddy in interview after Iron Bowl win

Nick Saban smiling

Nick Saban usually remains pretty even-keeled as a coach, but he’s starting to appreciate and celebrate wins more now than he used to. Saturday marked one of those instances.

Saban’s Alabama Crimson Tide came back from down 10-0 in the fourth quarter against rival Auburn. They tied the game with a touchdown in the final 30 seconds of regulation and then won 24-22 in the fourth overtime.

Saban must have resigned himself to thinking the team might lose and have a shot at the playoffs spoiled. That probably explains why he was beyond elated for his team to pull off the victory.

Look at how happy he was in his postgame interview with CBS’ Jamie Erdahl.

“I can’t put it into words,” Saban said after the game. “I’m so proud of the way the players competed in the game … it was unbelievable.”

The win improved Alabama’s record to 11-1 and keeps them alive for the CFP. They need to beat Georgia to secure a spot in the College Football Playoff. If they lose, they’ll be a 2-loss team and almost certainly eliminated from the playoff.

At this point, Saban is probably just happy to have escaped with a win.

Bryan Harsin made 1 big mistake against Alabama

Bryan Harsin with a headset on

The Auburn Tigers gave Alabama all they could handle in the Iron Bowl on Saturday, and actually blew a game they had in hand. Bryan Harsin sure didn’t help himself with a big decision in overtime.

Auburn led 10-0 in the fourth quarter. They allowed a field goal following a TJ Finley interception to make it 10-3. Then they allowed Alabama to score a touchdown to tie the game in the final half-minute of regulation.

It felt like Alabama had the momentum entering overtime. Sure enough, the Crimson Tide scored a touchdown to take a 17-10 lead in the first OT. But Auburn wasn’t done and scored a TD to make it 17-16. Harsin then had a decision: kick the extra point to keep the game going, or go for the win with a 2-point conversion. He chose the safe route and not the risky one. Auburn made the extra point to tie the game.

They eventually lost 24-22 in four overtimes.

There were numerous reasons why Harsin should have gone for two at that point. Alabama is the better team. The longer a game goes on, the more likely it is the better team prevails. Harsin could have reduced the game to one play at a time when Auburn had some momentum and fan support. Additionally, Finley was hurt and hobbling around. The longer the game went on, the worse off his health would have been.

All reasons pointed to them going for two, but Harsin didn’t do it. Nobody should be surprised that Alabama prevailed in the end. Apparently Harsin did not learn anything from Lance Leipold.

The conservative move, plus the team’s fourth quarter meltdown, cost them the victory.

Photo: Oct 16, 2021; Fayetteville, Arkansas, USA; Auburn Tigers head coach Bryan Harsin during the fourth quarter against the Arkansas Razorbacks at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium. Auburn won 38-23. Mandatory Credit: Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

Alabama WR Ja’Corey Brooks gets away with pushoff on tying touchdown

Jacorey Brooks pushes off

Auburn fans were not happy with the lack of a penalty call on the touchdown pass from Bryce Young to Ja’Corey Brooks towards the end of regulation in the Iron Bowl on Saturday.

Bama had a 3rd-and-10 at the Auburn 28 trailing 10-3 with 29 seconds left. Young took a snap from the shotgun and threw down the sideline towards Brooks in the end zone.

Brooks got away with a pushoff against Jaylin Simpson inside the five-yard line to help create separation for his touchdown catch:

That should have been offensive pass interference if the refs were calling things correctly. Maybe they decided to let a makeup call occur after the garbage roughing the passer called against Bama.

Bama made the extra point to tie the game, improbably sending things to overtime.

Alabama called for garbage roughing the passer penalty on Dallas Turner

Dallas Turner tackles Finley

Alabama was called for a garbage roughing the passer penalty late in their Iron Bowl rivalry game against Auburn on Saturday.

Auburn was leading 10-3 and had a 3rd-and-7 at midfield with under seven minutes left in the game. Tigers quarterback TJ Finley threw an interception, but he was bailed out after a penalty was called on Dallas Turner for roughing the quarterback.

In slow motion, it looks like Turner took an extra step to hit Finley unnecessarily. But in real time, you have a guy going full speed at a quarterback who just got rid of the ball.

What do you expect from a defender?

Calls limiting what defensive players can and cannot do have been getting worse and worse over the years. This is just another example of how limited defensive players are, and how much the game has tilted towards offenses and especially the passing game.

Bama ended up forcing a punt and getting the ball at their two. They would have had much better field position had the penalty not been called, allowing the interception to stand.

Jim Harbaugh had great quote about Hassan Haskins

Hassan Haskins running

Hassan Haskins was the offensive star of the game for Michigan in their 42-27 win over Ohio State on Saturday. The senior running back rushed for 169 yards and five touchdowns in a memorable performance. He was unstoppable in the second half, and Jim Harbaugh had a great quote about him after the game.

Harbaugh said Ohio State thought they saw a ghost, which turned out to be Haskins.

Haskins’ performance is a big tribute to Michigan’s offensive line, which pushed around the Buckeyes. The Wolverines rushed for 297 yards and six touchdowns. They were even able to run successfully at the end of the game despite Ohio State knowing it was coming.

The win was Harbaugh’s first against Ohio State as a head coach. It left him feeling good enough to talk a little trash.

Photo: Nov 6, 2021; Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA; Michigan Wolverines running back Hassan Haskins (25) rushes in the first half against the Indiana Hoosiers at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports