Picture Pages - Mascot Tackling Angles

Submitted by Meeechigan Dan on September 24th, 2010 at 4:30 PM

[Ed: bump.]

There has been spirited debate about the angles that Ohio University LB Rufus took in tackling the OSU RB Brutus during last Saturday's game. Does increased head mass require a higher tackling angle, or should traditional non-encephalitic technique be employed?

It is early in the game, with OSU lined up in a 1-1-9.  The RB is parallel with the fat dork carrying the flag. The OLine of nine band weenies is clearly off the line of scrimmage in an illegal formation, but this doesn't get called; we're in the Horseshoe, after all.

Unblocked, Rufus arrows towards Brutus demonstrating, at first glance, excellent technique with arms wide to wrap up the opponent.

But here the question of angle v. encephalitis comes into play. What can’t be seen at this angle is that the RB’s momentum is carrying him past the impact point targeted by the OU LB, exposing why a traditional, lower attack point is desired. The OSU RB pulls away with a little, mincing gesture with his forearm and clocks the fat dork (FD) in the head with his opposite elbow. By the way, WTF is with that running OSU dude on the left side of page? I’ll tell you what it is: too many men on the field.

At this point, it looks like the unblocked OU LB will tackle for a decisive TFL.

But then we see the consequences of hitting the OSU player too high: with help from the OSU FD, Brutus maintains his balance and stands up Rufus.

If Rufus hits the OSU player just above the knees, then there is no opportunity for Brutus to recover. The OLine here is still in pre-snap formation revealing that this is a trick play.

Rufus begins to slip as the RB deflects his momentum…

…and loses contain letting the RB into the secondary with a convoy of blockers...

The RB makes a mistake: he slows up and begins to taunt the OU sideline. Rufus cuts between the WR and the TE in pursuit...

Notice the poor blocking on the part of the OSU WR running with Brutus downfield. How can you let Rufus approach your RB untouched? Again, the OU LB takes waaaay too high of an angle at the goal line. Seriously, what is this? Who tackles a player this high? Shame on the RB for walking into the end zone. Typical OSU classiness.

Rufus hits high...

...and already in the end zone, the OU LB commits the personal foul with unnecessary roughness…

...yet still demonstating why it is important to hit the player low; he still can't get him down. Bonus: notice the abused, defeated expression on Brutus's face...

This is not football; it is more reminiscent of Bogs in Shawshank. The infamous punch that got Rufus suspended from the OU team leaves Brutus a shell of mascot.

Teammates hang their heads in shame.

Takeaways: Even large-headed mascots must maintain proper tacking angles. They should not compensate for higher mass distribution with a higher attack point. Paradoxically, the higher mass point makes mascots more vulnerable to the classic leg tackle.

Also, there is no place in football for the kind of personal foul witnessed at the end of the play. Even when the other team is execrable as OSU, keep it clean. Don't sink to their level.

Edit: Special thanks to a friend who took those pictures in the endzone (I pulled the link so that we stop overloading her server).



September 25th, 2010 at 11:25 AM ^

I know you don't want to "steal" the images, but I think the watermark covers that - and adding a link to your friend's site at the end of your post is probably the best thing you can do for her (I'm no SEO whiz, but I imagine you could add relevant words like "Columbus" and "photography" to the link text for a Google bonus).

Thing is, every new visitor to mgoblog right now is following the img src attribute for each of those images to nfoxphoto.com/osuvsou/[picnum].JPG (even if they stop at the LiveBlog post and don't scroll down to the second post) and that's what's probably slamming her site.  Seems like you could download the images and rehost on imgur.com or flickr or picasa or something.

The Man Down T…

September 24th, 2010 at 5:51 PM ^

Does it mean that I am evil and warped that I have tears in my eyes from laughing so hard at that last picture?  That mascot better never have to pay for his own beer in an Ann Arbor pub.  Heck, I'm sure he will be made welcome in every bar outside of Ohio.  That is an epic win!

Dana Dane

September 24th, 2010 at 7:38 PM ^

is that it's really hard to even see when you're wearing one of those costumes. I was Clifford at an elementary school book fair so my mom didn't have to be and your range of motion is probably +2, atrocious for acutal tackling. Kids like to go for the kneecaps...

Chunks the Hobo

September 24th, 2010 at 8:17 PM ^

I would just like to say A) +1000 cocktails and B) I remain so effing glad Michigan doesn't have a stupid mascot. I hate mascots, except when they are beating each other up. Then they are awesome. As long as we never have one. Even if the university offered me a year's supply of MD 20/20 to wear a stupid costume.


September 24th, 2010 at 8:28 PM ^

This is what's so great about college football: your rival's blog posting analysis of your mascot getting attacked. Great analysis, this is hilarious stuff.

I was at the game and watched the drama unfold. I thought it was awesome, not sure why so many Buckeye fans got their panties into a bunch. I wish there were more passion like this amongst lame mascots and cheerleaders. To think that this psychopath had this planned for a long time only adds to the legend. 

I would love to see someone belt that gay ND leprechaun in the mouth.

See you guys in November. Heard you have someone that can maybe play QB.


September 25th, 2010 at 5:38 PM ^

This is one of the funniest things I have seen in a while. Your commentary and analysis is very clever. Thank you so much for sharing and I can't wait to come back to see what else you have for us.

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