Greetings and welcome to another issue of Swami the Magazine! While StM typically focuses on entertaining you all and predicting the outcome of sporting events, there are times that the crew here at StM feels an urge to don a more educational mantle for you, our readers. This week there have been a lot of conversations regarding rules both written (see MLB rule 6.03(a)(3) regarding Russell Martin’s throw, back to the pitcher) and unwritten (see Epic Bat Flips) and the StM staff decided to take an educational approach to this week’s column. We will pick the games, but we will also share a little-known sports rule (or odd scenario that could or has happened) to go with each pick.
West Virginia v. Baylor – Baylor 56-34 – There is such a thing is a ground-rule triple. If a player attempts to catch a ball with his hat or mask, the hitter will automatically advance to third base.
Iowa v. Northwestern – Northwestern 28-27 – If a right-handed pitcher and a left-handed pitcher are warming up in the bullpen and the manager signals with his right or left hand for which pitcher to bring in, that is a binding decision. If a manager accidentally uses the wrong hand to signal, he cannot undo that decision.
Pitt v. Georgia Tech – Georgia Tech 37-31 – It is possible to hit into a triple play without a fielder touching the ball in baseball. Runners on 1st and 2nd with no one out. The batter pops up on the infield so the batter is out due to the infield fly rule. Then the runner on first passes the runner on second, likely due to the infield fly rule confusion, so he is out. Then the ball comes down and hits the runner that was on second and he is out.
Alabama v. Texas A&M – Texas A&M +4 – There was a game in 1917 where Babe Ruth was the starting pitcher but his teammate was credited with a perfect game. Ruth threw four balls to allow a base runner. A short kerfuffle followed and Ruth was tossed from the game. Shore came in to relieve, the base runner was gunned down trying to steal second and Shore then proceeded to retire the next 26 batters for the perfect game. By the way, that means he threw a perfect game but wasn’t credited with pitching a complete game.
Oklahoma v. K-State – Kansas State 33-31 – Goalkeepers in soccer are not allowed to slide their long sleeves up no matter how hot the day gets. The rationale for this is so referees are able to tell who punches the ball in a crowd of players.
Michigan State v. Michigan – Michigan 24-17 – The fair catch free field goal has actually happened in the past few years. In the NFL, if a punt returner elects for a fair catch, he can give his team an opportunity for three points. The team that made the fair catch can attempt an uncontested field goal from the spot of the fair catch which, if it goes through the uprights, is good for three points.
Florida v. LSU – LSU 34-24 – The offense can score 1 point without kicking the ball through the uprights. On the extra point after a touchdown, if the defense gains possession of the ball and is tackled in its own end zone, the offense is granted a one-point safety.
Missouri v. Georgia – Georgia 35-31 – The coin toss is important in football. In the NFL, three minutes before the start of the game, teams must send their captains out to the center of the field for the coin toss. Teams are allowed to send out no more than six players and all the players must be in full uniform and active participants in the game. If the teams send out more than six, or if a member is not in uniform or the captains are late to the kickoff, it is considered a delay of game penalty. Fifteen yards are added to the spot of the kick. However, there is also another penalty for this infraction. When this happens, a team loses its coin toss options for both halves of the game.
Arizona St. v. Utah – Utah 42-38 – When is a fumble not a fumble? If the quarterback is lined up under the center (not shotgun) and the snap goes clean between his legs without being touched, it’s not a fumble. It would be if it goes past his hip, or if it goes over his head, whether or not he touches it. But for some reason, the through-the-legs snap is magically protected and can’t be recovered by the defense. Of course, his center is going to be called for a false start, but at least you can take your time recovering the ball
Penn St. v. Ohio State – Ohio State 35-21 – Why on earth does this rule exist… When a team scores a touchdown they kick off to the other team. Technically if the team that was scored on wanted, they could actually kick off to the team that just scored. The rule exists that they get to choose. They stopped asking years ago because, who would ever do that? Maybe if you have a 70 point lead and you don’t want your QB to get hurt during a kneel-down? Or you are trying to hold onto a record that could be undone? I don’t know, but no reason that is in the spirit of the game, that’s for sure.
The Guru’s Take
Well, that escalated quickly. After being undefeated against the Swami this season, the Guru whiffed badly in calling Florida’s downfall a week too early (related note: It’s nice to know that Florida just keeps on being Florida – they’re undefeated and now suspended their starting QB for PED use and had a DB arrested for firing a gun at his pregnant girlfriend). This week has a number of matchups that should be outstanding games, but to get back on track, the Guru is going to pick his beloved Sooners to go into Manhattan and beat Kansas State. Rivalry games are a crapshoot, and OU was under the crap last week (mixed metaphors!), but Baker Mayfield should lead the offense to a rebound this week. The ageless Bill Snyder has KSU humming along again, nearly upsetting TCU in the process. But Oklahoma was embarrassed last week and will take out their aggression on the Wildcats. OU 33, KSU 27.
James & the Swamettes
The Chiefs are currently dead to us. It’s Royals or nothing. James and the Swamettes say Royals in 7 games over Toronto!