For the third straight week the Toledo Rockets dropped a game to a BCS Conference team, and this time the loss came with controversy.
With 2:07 left in the game and UT leading 27-23, Ryan Nassib lobbed an 18 yard TD pass to Alec Lemon giving the Orange a 29-27 lead. On the ensuing extra point Ross Krautman appeared to shank the kick to the left, but it was ruled good. No one seemed to notice until Syracuse was ready to kickoff. The referees were called over for a review, after which they decided the play stood as called giving the Orange a 30-27 lead.
Because of the ruling, a Ryan Casano 20-yard field goal as time expired sent the game into overtime rather than giving Toledo the win. In OT, Austin Dantin was intercepted in the endzone on the first play for the Rockets and Krautman kicked a 27 yarder for the Orange, splitting the uprights and giving Syracuse a 33-30 victory.
After the game the Big East issued this statement regarding the extra point: "After studying the videos of the Syracuse extra point attempt at 2:07 of the fourth quarter, we have concluded that the ruling on the field that the kick passed between the uprights was incorrect, and that the replay official made an error in failing to reverse that ruling. In reviewing the video, we have determined that the angle from behind the kicking team shows conclusively that the ball passes outside the right upright.
"Our review of the process determined that the replay official mistakenly focused his attention on the sideline angle, which proved to be distorted. We are confident that our officiating staff will learn from this situation in order to prevent a reoccurrence. "
Before the confusion in the final quarter the Rockets had other problems to deal with. Despite throwing for 258 yards and a touchdown, Austin Dantin suffered from flu-like symptoms throughout the game. RB Adonis Thomas left the game, after his first rushing attempt, with an injured left arm. He returned to the sidelines with a soft cast, early reports say he suffered a broken arm and will be out 3-4 weeks. In the third quarter, it was a scary sight on the field after CB Desmond Marrow lay motionless following a helmet-to-helmet hit. After being taken off the field on a stretcher, Marrow was taken to the hospital for a CT scan, which was negative. He has full movement and will recover, he appeared to have suffered a concussion.
Leading the way for the Rockets in the losing effort was Springfield alum, Eric Page. Page didn't score a touchdown, but he did have 13 catches for 158 yards, many of which came in big chunks. David Fluellen and Morgan Williams filled in nicely for Thomas, with Fluellen rushing for 62 yards and also catching a 29 yard pass for a score, while Williams ran eight times for 39 yards and two touchdowns. Just before halftime, Jeremiah Detmer kicked a 52-yard field goal to tie the game at 13.
Toledo is now 1-3 on the season, they open MAC play at Temple next Saturday at noon.