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Big 12 Referee Releases Statement On Oklahoma's Onside Kick

Lincoln Riley coaching against Kansas.

LAWRENCE, KANSAS - OCTOBER 05: Head coach Lincoln Riley of the Oklahoma Sooners watches from the sidelines during the game against the Kansas Jayhawks at Memorial Stadium on October 05, 2019 in Lawrence, Kansas. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

Oklahoma's failed onside kick with 1:45 left to play sealed the Sooners' fate and wrapped up Kansas State's stunning 48-41 win in Manhattan. The play was not without controversy.

Oklahoma actually came up with the ball in Kansas State territory, but upon further review, it was determined that the ball hit an OU player just before it traveled the requisite 10 yards. By rule, Kansas State got the ball back and ran out the clock.

However, it definitely appeared that Oklahoma player who illegally touched the ball did so because he was blocked into it by a member of Kansas State's 'hands' kickoff team.

Ultimately, the referees reversed the onside kick decision, and Oklahoma fans were left to debate if they got screwed. After the game, Big 12 referee Reggie Smith released a statement on what went into the ruling on the decisive kickoff. "We did consider all aspects of forced touching. However, based on Rule 2-11-4-c, this is why we came to the decision that we came to. Rule 2-11-4-c was the primary determination for considering forced touching," the statement said.

It did look like the OU player was blocked into the ball, but perhaps the officials felt like his momentum would have carried him into the kick anyway? That might be the only plausible explanation.

Oklahoma fell to 7-1 with the loss while Kansas State rose to 5-2.