No. 13 Houston escaped Tulsa on Saturday, 38-31. The Cougars avoided a second loss in a row by stopping Tulsa on an ultra-close last play, where a Tulsa player glided near the goal line and failed, by a matter of inches, to get the ball across the plane for a game-tying touchdown. It was heart-wrenching.
But on the play before, Houston got away with a pretty substantial offside foul.
There are a few things here.
One is that Houston defensive tackle Ed Oliver, No. 10, who makes the tackle on the play, is substituting into the game and is awfully close to still being offside when the Golden Hurricane snaps the ball. (This one’s kind of close, and it’s tough to see for sure from the angle we’ve got.)
But Houston has obvious problems in the form of two defenders who are running off the field. At least one of them definitely doesn’t get off the field, meaning Houston’s got at least 12 men on the field and at least one player offside.
Look at the bottom left-hand corner of this shot, from right after Tulsa’s snap:
There was a bit of end-of-game chaos here, but everything Tulsa’s doing looks clean. The Golden Hurricane have themselves aligned with seven men on the line of scrimmage, and everyone’s set before the snap.
Houston’s just offside, and the Cougars didn’t get called for it.