October 7th, 2014 at 5:42 PM ^

My opinion is that Narduzzi knows clapping can confuse the offense and so he implements it as a way of calling defenses. 2 birds one stone type of deal. I'd probably be mad if I were Pelini though. It is a smart move by Narduzzi. Unless there's a rule against it I would assume this will continue.

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October 7th, 2014 at 5:42 PM ^

The rules do clearly state that the defense cannot disrupte the cadence for the offense.  So they can't yell "hike" or anything like that.  But is a clap a cadence?  That is what needs to be answered.  Spartan D is known to bend the rules at all costs, yet Pelini is always a whiner.


October 7th, 2014 at 5:45 PM ^

Rule 7-1-5-a-3:

"No player shall use words or signals that disconcert opponents when they are preparing to put the ball in play. No player may call defensive signals that simulate the sound or cadence of (or otherwise interfere with) offensive starting signals."

I didn't listen to the game, although I did have it on in the background, so I don't know if there is any basis in the accusation. 


October 7th, 2014 at 6:02 PM ^

So what if the offensive cadence was "Right, strong-right, Right strong-right".  The defense wouldn't be able to call out the alignment to their own teammates?!  I know, a bit extreme but still.  Clapping seems to have become a cadence-thing only over the past decade or so...and now that it has, technically a defense shouldn't be allowed to do it?  Weird stuff; as I say below, the offense should figure their own stuff out and use something that the defense can't replicate.


October 7th, 2014 at 7:35 PM ^

I think it's more in the rhythm that the words are said in rather than the words themselves.  Obviously the defense needs to be able to call its own signals. 

I would imagine that officials would have to take an "I know it when I see it" approach to this, and I would also imagine that the defense needs to get the benefit of the doubt.

CRISPed in the DIAG

October 7th, 2014 at 5:56 PM ^

Grey area.  What if its confused with a show of enthusiam ("C'MON GUYS *clap/clap/clap/clap* "LETS GOOOO")?

Narduzzi is known for placing the burden on the refs for calling this stuff.  Just another example.  

MI Expat NY

October 7th, 2014 at 6:01 PM ^

Nebraska did have some weird instances where the center snapped the ball when the QB wasn't looking.  It's not odd to see it happen once in a while, but this was three or four times a game.  I wouldn't be surprised if MSU clapping was the cause.  In any event, I'm sure Urban Meyer will be all over the officials before their game to prevent the same problem.  

Everyone Murders

October 7th, 2014 at 7:09 PM ^

The key thing for me is that Pelini called Dantonio out, very publically, for cheating.  Since it involves no team from Ann Arbor, I approve - truth of the matter notwithstanding.

(Although under the no-simulation rule, it does seem like cheating.)

The Geek

October 7th, 2014 at 8:07 PM ^

because Michigan was playing like shit on Saturday, and I do remember noticing (for some reason I want to say it was the linebackers) clapping a few seconds before the snap.

I didn't really think anything of it at the time -- it is unusual, but I don't think the commentators even said anything about it during the game. (I could be wrong -- I had the Michigan radio feed on while watching part of the Sparty game).


tyler durden

October 8th, 2014 at 10:24 AM ^

What you noticed was the MSU LBs reading audibles and changing defenses accordingly. The defense puts a large amount of time into studying opponents' audible calls and adjusting accordingly to different coverages. It's fairly simple to do with a young QB like Armstrong, same philosophy as flipping CBs and having Waynes play to Armstong's right hand which MSU rarely does.

They have a variety of hand signals to change defenses--palms to the helmet, back of the hands to the helmet, certain number of hand claps, etc. Everyone on the defense makes the same signal to acknowledge the change. It worked really well against Saturday. Nearly every Nebraska audible went for little gain.

As to whether or not the clapping is intentionally done to "cheat" or throw off the offense, I'm assuming nearly everyone on this board will agree that it is.

turd ferguson

October 7th, 2014 at 8:28 PM ^

MSU is like that dickhead on Jeopardy who won by using dickhead strategy and dickhead psychology (and great... congratulations... very smart... lovely) but still looks like a dickhead to most people who believe there are rules to be followed even if you probably won't get punished for violating them.


October 7th, 2014 at 9:04 PM ^

For a team to actually make this a part of their defensive strategy...that just seems petty and beyond the scope of the game of football. I would be pretty embarrassed if Michigan were to do something similar.


October 7th, 2014 at 9:22 PM ^

A couple bad snaps were the least of their problems. Clapping had little impact on the fact Abdullah only had 45 yards on 24 carries which seems to be the strategy to beat Nebraska. In the game against McNeese he only had 54 yards on 17 carries while he has had three games over 200 yards. 


October 9th, 2014 at 8:37 AM ^

Bo didn't bring this topic up or start complaining about itafter the game. His comments were in response to a question raised specifically about the hand clapping, apparently one of the press noticed the MSU defense clapping and asked Bo about it.

That being said, nobody on the Nebraska side thinks the game was won or lost on this. Sparty was the better team that night.