Blackmon dominates Cats

OSU wideout sets NCAA record in route of Arizona
2010-12-30T00:00:00Z 2014-07-08T16:11:21Z Blackmon dominates CatsPatrick Finley Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
December 30, 2010 12:00 am  • 

SAN ANTONIO - Justin Blackmon had caught a 71-yard touchdown pass, but decided to take the long way to the end zone.

As he neared the goal line, the OSU wideout ran from the right sideline to the left, a victory lap of sorts, before crossing the white stripe to give OSU a 14-0 lead over Arizona.

"Proving that his ankle was back to normal," OSU coach Mike Gundy said.

Want a lasting image from the Arizona Wildcats' second straight bowl drubbing?

Cue that up on the DVR.

Blackmon proved Wednesday night in a 36-10 shellacking that he was the nation's best wide receiver, catching nine passes for 117 yards and two touchdowns. In doing so, he set an NCAA record for having more than 100 yards and at least one score in 12 straight games.

The Wildcats' memory will focus on Blackmon not just because of his colorful touchdown catch, but because he was so near the end zone. The UA was playing rolling coverage toward his side, only the corner and safety didn't communicate properly, leaving Blackmon the only person within 10 yards of the ball when he caught it.

"Mental mistake," UA coach Mike Stoops said.

The UA's Robert Golden was impressed by Blackmon's ability to get past jam coverage but said the "great receiver" was stopped by the UA at times.

"I felt like we held them down pretty much," he said.

That's debatable. Blackmon dominated the game, which might be his last as a collegian. He said after the game he wanted to make a decision about his NFL draft eligibility soon, and that "I still have to talk to my family."

Blackmon actually called his first touchdown - sort of.

Before the deep pass, he spoke to quarterback Brandon Weeden.

"He said, 'Throw me the dad-gum ball,'" Weeden said. "And the next play we threw the ball."

Said Blackmon, with a twinkle in his eye: "Exact quote."

The pass changed the momentum of the game. Within six minutes of kickoff, the Wildcats were where they didn't want to be - behind. It was the Holiday Bowl 2009, all over again.

"It was a big play," Blackmon said. "It was a great play call. I think it changed momentum and gave us a lot of spark.

"It kinda made us come out and want it more.

"I think it gave us a lot of momentum."

The Wildcats outgained OSU in the final three quarters, but the damage - a 23-7 lead three minutes into the second frame - had been done.

"I went out there having fun," Blackmon said. "It's a bowl game. We practice three weeks with our own team. I was just happy to be out there with another color jersey lined up across from us.

"I just wanted to have a little fun."

Gundy stressed the Cowboys have "always played the game with class." He said OSU doesn't taunt other players, and that he didn't see the circuitous touchdown route at first.

"When you practice for a month and you get in the game, sometimes you do things like that," he said. "I'm for him doing more of that for us.

"I like touchdowns."

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