It seems like you can't even breathe on a quarterback these days without a flag being thrown. On Monday night, Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota nearly had his helmet ripped off by a Texas player. No flag was thrown for some inexplicable reason.
Mariota was pretty upset with the referees for not making the call, and the Oregon coaches box was livid. Mariota is already dealing with an MCL injury that really limited in the final month of the season, and him being yanked backwards like that could not have felt good. He also suffered a head injury in a loss to Arizona on Nov. 23 that may still be bothering him a bit.
It looked to be unintentional, but still ... that's an awfully curious no-call. Here was one opinion from the former Pac-12 Coordinator of Officials.
2 of 2: It looked to me like the defender grabbed the inside of the helmet. should've been a flag, BUT not enough video evidence to confirm.— Dave Cutaia (@CFBRulesExpert) December 31, 2013
Final thought: on any facemask penalty, the facemask or ANY opening on the helmet must be grabbed & twisted/turned #RulesExpert— Dave Cutaia (@CFBRulesExpert) December 31, 2013