That Defining Moment
by Brendan Collins
(Auburn, AL )
Will Texas Tech Go All The Way?
Every season is characterized by that defining moment that takes place on the field. Championship teams have that one drive, that one play, that one momentum swinger, that they know changed their season. Some are easier to define than others, but they are always there. It can be at the very end of a season (See: Super Bowl XLII, when Eli throws a fade pass to find Burress for a touchdown) or at the very beginning of a season (See: Clemson fumbling on the first play from scrimmage this year and ending their hopes).
On Saturday night, the world saw that moment. In fact, those who watched Texas and Texas Tech fight out arguably the most exciting game so far this year, were lucky enough to see both team’s moments. In just a few seconds no less. After one of the most exciting scoring drives of the year, in which Texas’ Heisman hopeful Colt McCoy, who looked more magician than man, gave Texas the one point lead, two seasons collided. Texas Tech’s season had been given an ultimatum, score or go home. Win, for the first time in school history against a number one ranked team, or lose, and go back to being the same old Texas Tech; losing the ones that matter most. It sounds simple enough, and if there is one offense in the country built for a quick score, it’s in Lubbock. But let’s not forget the momentum that Texas had gained, taking a lead for the first time in the game and with some confusion for Tech’s field goal kicking, it seemed the comeback had been completed. But in this time of college football turmoil we should know better than to make such statements.
The comeback, was there for the taking, with a Tech first and ten from the Texas twenty-eight and a Harrell pass knocked up into the air. Texas Freshman Earl Thomas had the best play on it, diving forward. A catch and Texas secures an incredible comeback, successfully defending their number one ranking, and maybe more incredible, holding off four consecutive top eleven teams for the first time. An unbelievable accomplishment and, with few real threats left on the schedule, a solid case for a National Championship and undefeated season, all with just one catch. One of those season defining moments, that one play, that one momentum swinger. It was not to be, however, as the ball fell harmlessly through his outstretched arms and fell for an incompletion, giving Harrell and Co. one more chance to complete the upset.
I said that there were two moments to be seen, and Texas Tech’s own Heisman hopeful, Graham Harrell floated a deep pass to the far sideline, to find the sensational sophomore Michael Crabtree for a last-second-win-or-go-home type play, to leave one second on the clock. We all saw LSU throw one up just like that last year and in the same fashion, Texas Tech connected and scored, winning the game.
Now again in this time of college football turmoil, I know better than to say that the Red Raiders are bound for a National Championship and an undefeated season, in fact they have just gotten into the meat of their schedule. They have something close to what Texas just ground through and will they have the same success? Only time will tell. One can’t argue though, that at this point in the season, they certainly have that defining moment.