I was recently at a football game in the desert in Phoenix. Wisconsin Badgers vs the Sun Devils. Great fans, nice stadium, great game and of course a beautiful location. But the game had some interesting moments, particularly the end. Much of the officiating gave the appearance of the all creative WAC officials. Which is unfortunate as the rabbit hole is too deep to project who should have won but should still not go unnoticed as corrections should be made.
It was my first time on the inside of the stadium through my many trips to Phoenix, nice stadium. I was surprised that it was not sold out and the lack of any real luxury boxes. Back in Madison pretty much every game is sold out and there are a few thousand luxury box seats. But then again there is a lot more to do in Phoenix than there is in Madison.
The match. Like all games, there were some questionable calls but not as questionable as the last play of the game. We were on the 20 yard line 29 rows up on the same side of the field as the last play. Stave had the ball 18 seconds left. It appeared he he was going to do a quick run centering the ball and then spike the ball to stop the clock. The play started, stave ran the the center of the field, kneeled, placed the ball on the ground, but then looked like he called a time out. That was in 3 seconds with 15 seconds left. Then a sun devil fell on the ball about 4 seconds later with 11 seconds left, then he payed on the ball for about 8 seconds. With 3 seconds left. Then the ref tapped the sun devil off and didn’t set the ball until the clock expired. In hind Dwight the badgers should have kicked the field goal to lead by a point and leaving the kick off with 15 seconds left. With no time outs it was the only sure then for the badgers. There is risk in everything but with no timeouts, less risk in a kickoff and then a defense on the field for 11 seconds. It’s maybe 2 plays, for the sun devil and game over. Oh, the the refs ran off the field extremely quickly.
The stadium had a lot of energy, some nice fireworks throughout the game, fans were nice, and understandably excited. Some things I would like to see with the stadium is an upgrade to the scoreboards, they had only two small scoreboards in the south end zone, and they take out the top 20 rows of the east stadium and put in two stories of luxury boxes. With the heat and the money in Phoenix, i would bet they can get the support, and it appears they would fill the stadium with the fewer seats, which is great for the energy of the game.