Douglas Coleman's lateral will live in infamy
Douglas Coleman III is quite a football player for Texas Tech. The senior from Zachary, Louisiana, leads the NCAA in interceptions, with seven in eight games.
But now Coleman will forever be remembered among football’s greatest follies, along with the likes of Leon Lett and Joe Pisarcik.
With 13 seconds left in a tie game Saturday night, Texas Tech blocked a Kansas field-goal attempt. The ball came to Coleman, who tried to find running room, then inexplicably turned and lateraled to a teammate. But no Red Raider was there, and Kansas deep snapper Logan Klusman recovered at the Tech 14-yard line, with two seconds left.
KU’s Liam Jones returned and a kicked a 32-yard field goal to give the Jayhawks a 37-34 victory.
“There’s nobody that strains more or cares more about this team than Douglas Coleman,” said first-year Tech coach Matt Wells. “It was an unfortunate play made with all the right intentions. Just, you gotta know a situation better. We as coaches need to inform them better. The guy has strained and done so many things well and done so many things right.
“Doug’s a good player and he’s an even better kid. He’s handling it with class, with dignity. And unfortunately, a lot of the spotlight is on that play. We lost that game at other points.”
Wells said Tech teaches players to try to scoop and score with a blocked kick that doesn’t cross the line of scrimmage, but blocked kicks that cross the line of scrimmage should be left alone. However, Coleman cleanly fielded the blocked kick. He just foolishly tried to lateral, apparently thinking time had expired.
“Right intentions, unfortunate result,” Wells said. “I understand the spotlight will always be on that play, but internally, we know games are not lost on that one play.”