so much for that
Debunking the importance of That Unsportsmanlike Conduct Penalty
Now, part-in-parcel with the "was the penalty justified?" argument must be the statement "the decision in question significantly effected the outcome of the game". For example, if Brandon Minor picks up 15 yards on first-and-ten but the refs only spot him for 14.5 yards, and Michigan later has to punt, nobody's going to argue about the spot because it didn't much matter in the big picture of things. Thus, in arguing that Allen should not have been flagged, ND fans are also arguing that if he hadn't been flagged, the game would have turned out differently. However, this is clearly not the case.
To make this argument we must enter a PARALLEL UNIVERSE! The rules of the PARALLEL UNIVERSE are as follows: Inside the parallel universe, everything happens exactly as it happened in our universe EXCEPT for the one thing that was changed. If we don't make this assumption then the parallel universe is useless for comparative purposes. With that in mind, let's begin.
Our universes diverge at the exact moment Armando Allen crosses the goal line for a successful two point conversion. In our universe, he "shushes" the crowd (and drops some F-bombs?). In the Parallel universe, he hands the ball to the ref, quietly thanks Vishnu (He practices Hinduism in the parallel universe. What?) for giving him the strength to reach the end zone, and returns to the sidelines. Jimmah Clausen's dance is ESPN's top play of the day, and he and his linemen compete in America's Top Dance Crew during the offseason, finishing third.
In our universe, Odoms returns the ensuing kickoff (which was kicked from 15 yards back due to the penalty) 15 yards to the Michigan 41.
In the parallel universe, Odoms returns the ensuing kickoff (which was kicked from the standard spot) 15 yards to the Michigan 26.
After that, in our universe Michigan drives before stalling with a 4th-and-15 at the Michigan 49.
In the parrallel universe Michigan drives before stalling with a 4th-and-15 at the Michigan 34.
In our universe, Michigan takes a deliberate delay-of-game penalty to back up 5 yards, but then Notre Dame jumps offsides moving the line back to the 49. Zoltan Mesko (who, incidentally, can SEE parallel universes. Freaky, huh?) then punts 34 yards to the ND 16. No return. Note the length of the punt - 34 yards would be pretty subpar, but Zoltan is trying to get the ball inside the 20 but not in the end zone, which he does successfully.
In the parallel universe, Michigan does not take the deliberate delay-of-game penalty but Notre Dame still jumps offsides, giving Michigan 4th-and-10 at the Michigan 39. From here, Zoltan is doing a straight-up max distance punt, and he gets it 45 yards (two more than his average from last year) which lands at... the Notre Dame 16. No return.
Look! At this point, the parallel universe and ours have re-converged, and we find Notre Dame with the ball in the same spot with the same about of time on the clock in both universes. We are left to conclude that in the big picture, Armando Allen's unsportsmanlike conduct had no more effect on the final outcome of the game than any of the millions of other minute, insignificant events and that make up a football game.