Oregon Ducks Football: What If

Tyler RobinsonContributor IIJanuary 12, 2011

GLENDALE, AZ - JANUARY 10:  Michael Dyer #5 of the Auburn Tigers rolls on top of Eddie Pleasant #11 of the Oregon Ducks and runs for a 37-yard run late in the fourth quarter during the Tostitos BCS National Championship Game at University of Phoenix Stadium on January 10, 2011 in Glendale, Arizona.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

I gave it a day.

I haven't thought about it, I haven't talked about it with my friends, or with the guy down at the local Texaco (he loves the Ducks). I still haven't watched Sportscenter simply because I don't think could bear to watch it all unfold again.

But I think I'll try and give it a shot right now.

First and for most, the Ducks played an amazing game, and it was one of the hardest fought battles in BCS history.

I've never been more proud to be a Duck.

But what if?

What if Darron Thomas hands the ball to LaMichael James and he walks in for a touchdown at the start of the second quarter.

What if Cliff Harris' second interception wasn't called incomplete and the Ducks take over? Then Cam Newton doesn't throw a touchdown pass to Kodi Burns on the next play.

What if Kenjon Barner doesn't get stopped at the one on fourth down and scores a touchdown? Or what would have happened if the Ducks had decided to kick a field goal instead of going for it? 

That's a lot of "what ifs."

And you know what, the Ducks over came all of these mishaps. Oregon managed to keep the game close. With 5:05 left in the fourth quarter Oregon linebacker Casey Matthews came up behind Newton and punched the ball out forcing a fumble that Cliff Harris would fall on.

Oregon took over on their own 40 with the score at 19-11. Darron Thomas finally got the offense going, and drove the ball downfield.

The Ducks would score on a two yard shuffle pass to LaMichael James with 2:33 left in the fourth. Thomas came up big on the two point conversion when he saved a bad snap, rolled right and threw back across the field to find Jeff Maehl for two, tying the game at 19 a piece.

For a short moment it looked as if we were all looking at overtime, and then the unthinkable happened.

With just under two minutes left in the fourth the Tigers had a first and ten on their own forty. They would hand the ball off to Michael Dyer and he'd pick up about seven yards after being brought down by Eddie Pleasant....Dyer got up and looked for a ref to hand the ball to, and then all of the sudden he took off down field. He ended up picking up 37 yards on the play.

You all know the play I'm talking about. Was he down? I don't know and I'm not here to argue about it, but I do know that Arkansas D.J. Williams was ruled down on a very similar play. The refs would go to the booth and they determined that the play would stand.  Auburn would continue to drive down the field and eventually kicked the game winning field goal as time expired.

What if Dyer had been ruled down on the play, would Auburn still have picked up enough yards to kick a field goal? Maybe. But we'll never know.

It's really unfortunate that a game that was played hard by both teams would be determined by a questionable fluke play. You can't help but feel a little ripped off after losing in that sort of fashion.

I couldn't imagine a tougher way to lose a game.

It was a season to remember for anyone who is a part of the Oregon Duck family. While the Ducks may not have one it this year, they will come back next year with all the making for another championship run.

The Duck faithful have a lot to look forward to in the future and we should all be very proud of what Oregon accomplished this year.

Yell "OOOO" loud and wear it proud. GO DUCKS!