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Alex Shoemaker

Alex Shoemaker

Alex's passion is writing about NW sports, and as a native Eugenian and Churchill High School alumni, he understands how important sports are to the Eugene community. He also received his degree from the University of Oregon in 2013. After a year as Sports Editor at EDN, Alex is now the Sports Editor at the Buffalo Bulletin in Buffalo, Wyoming. You can reach Alex on Twitter @MrAlexShoemaker
alex.shoemaker@eugenedailynews.com http://alexshoemaker.org https://www.facebook.com/pages/Alex-Shoemaker/418102894890655 MrAlexShoemaker

What You Didn’t See on the Field (Civil War)

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There are things that go unnoticed by fans, analysts in the booth and all those not directly on the field. Throughout Oregon’s 2012 season, I’ve been on the field shooting photography and getting the “on the field scoop.”

And while the great commentators of the Pac-12 Network bring you great information, there were some things throughout the game that weren’t fully or adequately discussed. Here are some of the reoccuring themes from the Civil War you might have missed:

Oregon’s Hroniss Grasu (55) gets away with a hold as running back Kenjon Barner (24) breaks off for a huge run (Alex Shoemaker/Eugene Daily News)

Uncalled Holding Penalties All Day

A great man once said, “There’s holding on every play; it’s just not called.” That’s not entirely accurate, but somewhat true. There’s a lot of leeway in referee’s views of what is holding. Both offensive lines were getting away with long holds.

The reason for all the holding? Both Oregon and Oregon State have really good defensive lines. The Ducks feature Dion Jordan and company and the Beavers feature one of the best collective run defenses in the Pac-12.

As seen in the picture, Oregon’s Hroniss Grasu got away with a clear hold on Oregon State’s Castro Masaniai on a long Kenjon Barner run early in the first half. Again, these holds were happening when both teams were on the field.

The personal foul penalties were at a minimum despite the physical play. The referees let the players play on (Alex Shoemaker/Eugene Daily News)

A Lot of Late Jabs 

Like the physicality of the offensive line, the rest of the game was chippy and full of heated players. None more so than Oregon’s De’Anthony Thomas. Thomas, clearly after the whistle had blown, was picked up and driven into the ground on a play during the game, and then proceeded to stand up and stomp on an opposing player.

That, of course, was the most noticeable of the “extra-curricular” activities, but it happened all day long.

In fact, the majority of the hard and dirty hits seemed to be coming late in the second half, when the game was essentially decided and emotions were flying high. With rivalries, you have to expect a lot of late and dirty plays.

Thomas spoke after the game how players were trying to “role ankles under the pile” and taking “dirty hits.” But, again, it’s a rivalry game. Those things just happen. If you take a look at the game again, watch the WR/CB matchups for both teams. A lot of hand action after the plays were over. The sideline referees did a good job keeping the game “civil.”

RB De’Anthony Thomas (right) signals the crowd to hush as WR Josh Huff (left) comes in to celebrate the score (Alex Shoemaker/Eugene Daily News)

Fans and Players Exchanging Gestures

Thomas had arguably one of his strongest performances of his you career in the Civil War. He rushed for over 100+ yards for the first time since Week 2 against Fresno State and put up three touchdowns on the scoreboard. He was running with purpose. Many have called it “running with anger.”

After each of his three scores, he made some sort of “hush” gesture to the crowd. In retrospect, that was WAY more respectable than the verbal abuse coming back towards the Ducks players. Even for rivals, there’s no excuse for the verbal onslaught coming from the stands.


Hopefully this brought a better grasp of some of the things that went overlooked. If you found this article helpful, leave a comment and send us a tweet to both @MrAlexShoemaker and our coverage account @EugeneDailyNews

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