Wednesday, December 25, 2002

Tulane 36, Hawaii 28: As expected, this game was high-scoring. Not much else to say about the inaugural Hawaii Bowl, except for the fact that Tulane opened the game with a successful onsides kick. Why other teams don't try that is a mystery to me; it seems like the early onside kick succeeds more than half the time, and even at the end of the game, when the receiving team is expecting the play, it has a success rate of about 30%. Even without the element of surprise, the strategem would keep the opponent's special teams honest, forced to keep an extra player or two up front to prevent the kicking team from succeeding. Coaches fear the risk of going for it on fourth down, even though mathematically, it almost always makes sense to do so; the early onside kick would be based on the same principal, but be less open for second-guessing, making it ideal for even the most risk-adverse coach.


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