“Value The Football”


It’s the number one, ultimate directive of the game of football.

At every level, for everybody on the field.

Value. The. Football.

It is the golden, oblong chalice. Get it. Steal it. Keep it. Hold it. Your football destiny depends on it.

So with that, I present two opposite ends of the spectrum of hustle and heady play from the weekend.

The first, is now widely known college dummy Kaelin Clay of Utah, who was simply TOO COOL to run across the goal-line safely with the football firmly in his hands.

Nah. That shit’s for nerds, man. LOOK AT ME! I just BLEW SOMEBODY UP!!!

And left the ball at the 1 fucking yard line, you idiot clown. You modern, self-absorbed, bastard child of the SportsCenter generation.

At least Clay’s “Drop-Six” as it were, prompted some post-game humility.

Clay slumped down on the bench and briefly pulled his black head band down over his eyes.
“I know how important points are, so I take full responsibility,” Clay said. “I got carried away.”

Little late, fella. Your team lost. Your ego and stupidity resulted in a 14 point swing. Good work. But hey, nice pointing to your name on your back.


Meanwhile, there was a play from the pros that had me re-wind and re-wind the DVR more than any other play. It was the Niners fumble recovery in OT vs. the Saints. Out of seemingly nowhere, rookie LB Chris Borland from Wisconsin shoots in head-first like a MISSILE, and recovers the magic oblong chalice.

It was the kind of play that might save the Niners season, and might keep Harbaugh in San Francisco. Just look at this still cap taken before the moment Borland pounced. Hard to believe HE would be the guy to recover that ball.

If it’s any solace to Mr. Clay, Danny Trevathan of the Broncos did the same thing last year on opening night. And DeSean Jackson did it both as an Eagle, and more amazingly as a college player in the All-American Game. Even though the latter was a “for show” game that didn’t really matter, it takes some insane self-absorbed balls (and freakish athleticism) do something like that!

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Steve Czaban is a 25 year sports radio veteran, who hosts an afternoon drive show in Washington D.C. "Czabe" also writes and edits his own commentaries for www.czabe.com and other on-line and print publications. He can be reached at czabe@yahoo.com.


  1. This is Barack Obama’s presidency in a nutshell. Before he actually breaks the plane of the goal line, he loses the senate. Scott Walker, Joni Ernst, and the rest of the GOP all-stars run it back the other way.

  2. It bizarre that this keeps happening recently. I never saw this before D Jackson did it against Dallas and I couldn’t believe that wasn’t his first time. Also, it doesn’t seem that there are any consequences either. Clay was out for the ensuing kickoff. Imagine a baseball player worrying about celebrating over touching home plate after a home run. Wouldn’t happen because he’d probably get beaned next time up even though it helped the other team.

  3. My favorite part of the picture is the fan above the ref pleading with Clay to stop celebrating and pick up the ball. Such a great photo!


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