Like a tennis doubles partner playing at the net and hoping the server doesn’t smack you in the back, the blockers on the punt team are making a small leap of faith.
As the above video illustrates, that leap of faith wasn’t rewarded in one instance for Thurston (Springfield, Ore.) Friday night.
Pinned deep in his own territory, Thurston’s punter doesn’t get quite the hang time he’s looking for, instead booting the football to the back of his teammate’s head. The ball bounces out of the end zone for a safety, much to the delight of at least one Ashland defender. That brought the score to 23-3, where it stayed in the Ashland victory.
You have to give credit to the blocker who gets hit in the back of the dome, then continues to try and fend off the hard-charging Ashland player coming from the outside.
While a player did get bopped in the melon by a football, you could make the argument that Thurston was putting “safety” first.