Louisiana Tech Loses 87 Yards On One Fumble, Ends Up With A 3rd Down And 93

Picard Facepalm

Yesterday was a bad day for Louisiana Tech football:

Louisiana Tech didn’t get many opportunities to score against Mississippi Stateon Saturday night.

And even when it did, things went from good to bad really fast.

Poised to slice into a 57-14 deficit early in the fourth quarter, Louisiana Tech was looking at second-and-goal from the Mississippi State 6-yard line when chaos broke loose:

A high snap sailed over quarterback J’Mar Smith’s head and skirted downfield. Smith tried to land on it but couldn’t. Mississippi State defensive back Maurice Smitherman tried to land on it but couldn’t. His teammate C.J. Morgan tried to scoop it up but couldn’t, instead inadvertently kicking the ball downfield all the way to Louisiana Tech’s 7, where receiver Cee Jay Powellfinally corralled it.

Six yards away from the end zone just seconds earlier, Louisiana Tech instead faced a third-and-goal — with 93 yards to go for a touchdown. Of course, it didn’t get there, punting two plays later in what ultimately was a 57-21 defeat.


he loss of 87 yards also marked the worst negative play in the FBS since at least 2004.

“It was a strange game at times, wasn’t it,” Mississippi State coach Dan Mullen said of a contest that, in addition to an 87-yard fumble, included three blocked extra points and one blocked punt.

Here’s the video:

No word whether or not the Lousiana Tech football team is now walking around with paper bags over their heads.

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Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. Tyrell says:

    Sounds like the special teams need some more practice.

  2. Just 'nutha ig'nint cracker says:

    At least they recovered their own fumble. The only thing that’s worse is that no one from Miss State could figure out how to just fall on the ball to recover the fumble. Clearly, they didn’t have any of their “hands” players on the field.

  3. Franklin says:

    I’ve always thought it was captivating when teams ended up with a 4th and 36 or whatever after a couple sacks and maybe a penalty or two. I don’t even remember one that even got to 50 yards to go. So this really made my day!

  4. Mikey says:

    Oh my goodness, that video is total comedy gold. They couldn’t have made it any funnier if they were doing it on purpose.

  5. Hal_10000 says:

    Metaphor Alert.

  6. Matt says:

    @Mikey: Yeah. Gave me a good laugh to see the opposing team also fail massively at grabbing the ball.

  7. SC_Birdflyte says:

    This reminds me of Garo Yepremian’s failed attempt at running back a botched snap back in the 70s.