Facemask fallout, Quizz for Heisman
CORVALLIS — The blown facemask call against USC's Taylor Mays didn't end on the field for James Rodgers: He had to visit the dentist for a chipped tooth.
Mays pulled on Rodgers' facemask so hard it came off during USC's 42-36 victory over Oregon State last Saturday. Rodgers was running into the end zone for a touchdown in the fourth quarter.
The foul wasn't called and later the Pac-10 Conference suspended the official who missed it. The league did not name the official.
"We have taken this action in light of the blatant and dangerous nature of the missed call," Pac-10 Commissioner Larry Scott said in a statement. "We have full confidence in our highly trained and qualified staff of football officials, but they, like the coaches and players, are accountable and must meet the high expectations placed upon them."
Mays said he apologized to Rodgers afterward.
"I didn't mean to rip the dude's helmet off," he said. "Right after it happened, I got up and said, 'Hey, I wasn't trying to be dirty.'"
Rodgers addressed the matter via Twitter (typos and all):
"J—Rodge8 does not have a problem with Taylor Mays for snatching my helmet off its all good he was trying to make a play and unfortunately ... and in process of to that he pulled my helmet off...we are coo i talked 2 him after the game and i assure you that he didn't do it on purpose."
QUIZZ SHOW: So if Jacquizz Rodgers is so great, why isn't he attracting more national attention? Like Heisman buzz?
ESPN's Pac-10 guru Ted Miller thinks he should be. Miller wrote a column for ESPN.com making the claim.
Rodgers is averaging 115 yards rushing a game, ranking him 10th nationally, and has 14 touchdowns on the ground. He's also caught 42 passes for 279 yards with a touchdown.
Quizz, as he's known, rushed for 1,253 yards last year, a Pac-10 record for a freshman — despite missing the final two games because of an injury. He was the first freshman to be named the league's player of the year.
So far this season Rodgers has rushed for 810 yards. He has never fumbled.
"In a ton of ways, he's playing at the highest level in the country," Oregon State coach Mike Riley said. "If you are looking for someone with a deal like that, I do not see what he wouldn't qualify."
As good as he might be, it will be difficult for Quizz to gain the attention bestowed on such current players as Florida quarterback Tim Tebow.
Quizz plays on the West Coast, where at times games come too late for a national audience. Second, Oregon State is unranked, overshadowed in its conference by No. 4 USC and the rival down the road, No. 10 Oregon.
EXTRA POINTS: Oregon State (4-2, 2-2) hosts UCLA (3-4, 0-4) at Reser on Saturday, a game that's being overshadowed by No. 4 USC's visit to No. 10 Oregon down the road in Eugene. ... Beavers QB Sean Canfield is averaging 247.7 yards passing a game. He has just four interceptions in 239 attempts. ... The Bruins have lost four straight games.