Awful. Disappointing. Deflating. Some of the adjectives you could use to describe what has to be the biggest choke in sports history. Tied 38-all with just 3 seconds left, Stanford’s kicker, the redshirt freshman Jordan Williamson, hooked a sure-fire 35-yard field goal wide left. If he hit it, Stanford would have won the 2012 Fiesta Bowl 41-38. But he missed it.
Williamson missed it.
The miss has to be the biggest choke in sports history.
Yes. Bigger than the Houston Oilers giving up a 35-3 halftime lead to the Buffalo Bills in the 1993 AFC Wild Card Game. Bigger than Greg Norman’s awful final day performance in the 1996 Masters. Bigger than Chris Webber’s outer-spaced-out time out in the 1993 NCAA Championship.
The biggest choke in sports history.
Stanford Head Coach David Shaw and NFL-bound Quarterback Andrew Luck set the table for the green freshman. But this blogger could see a shade of doubt creep in to the mind of Coach Shaw. Just before Williamson’s first miss, Shaw was pacing the sidelines thinking. Then a sudden shake of the head, as if to say ‘I can’t think that’, was evident. Could it be that Shaw had the idea that ‘Maybe my freshman player will miss?’
Yes or no, a few seconds later, Williamson did.
But, as shocking as that miss was, Williamson backed it up with, yes, another miss – a 43 yarder during overtime. But since that was after the epic first choke, we can only conclude that Williamson had the idea he would miss again.
Oklahoma State, the 3rd ranked team versus Stanford’s 4th ranking, played like they were the 10th ranked team most of the game, outgained in yardage, and out-coached for most of the game. But Mr. Williamson changed all that; Oklahoma State took advantage of its only real chance to win, and did, 41-38.
Williamson Thinks Too Much
The main problem was simple: Williamson thinks too much. Before the first miss, television cameras caught him in a kneeling position looking to the ground at the grass, contemplating the kick that was to come. Williamson should have been taking practice swings at the ball rather than thinking. But that didn’t happen.
Williamson missed. Twice.
Williamson chocked. Stanford choked.