We didn't see this Saturday, when it actually happened, but this, via Sean Korte, is the worst fake punt in the history of fake punts. Watch it a million billion trillion times.
This happened in the second quarter of Miami's 41-20 win, and at the time, the score was only 20-7. Arkansas State had the ball at Miami's 41-yard-line, and were smart not to punt in enemy territory, but their execution was ... well ... confusing. Very confusing.
1. Send a gunner in motion.
This confuses the defense. Which isn't necessarily a great idea, since part of a good fake punt is the element of surprise. But still! This is a real football thing you might do!
2. HAVE ONE PLAYER FALL OVER AND DIE
WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF THIS? WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF THIS? WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF THIS?
We can think of two possibilities: The first is that receiver Booker Mays' collapse is meant to distract the defense. This does not happen. Everybody promptly ignores him. The second is that the hope is the opposing team simply forgets about him, a la Riley Cooper lying down in the end zone.
This also does not happen. Another Vine from Mr. Korte reveals that as soon as this guy stood up, a Miami defender keyed in on him and DESTROYED HIM the instant he gained his balance again:
Good play by the Miami player -- when something dead comes back to life, you gotta take it out immediately. Could be an infectious zombie.
3. THROW THE BALL INTO THE MIDDLE OF NOWHERE
There actually is a receiver on this side of the field, but he vroomed out of our field of vision way before the pass was thrown. The punter, Luke Ferguson, ends up tossing one into double coverage well, well short of the receiver in such a way that the only possible player who could catch it was one of these two guys, who are on the wrong team.
This, all things considered, is the best part of this play. If Ferguson's throw had gone incomplete, Miami would've taken over on their own 41. Instead, it's intercepted, and the ensuing return by Raphael Kirby only makes it to their own 31. So, this pass being so bad that somebody had to intercept it probably netted the Red Wolves about 10 yards. Of course, punting might've worked better than ... you know ... this.
For some reason, we don't think the "fall over dead" fake punt has a future in college football.
If you're curious, there is an actual explanation for what happens here. The WR who falls over is "covered" by the receiver below him on the line of scrimmage, making him an ineligible receiver. The WR going in motion uncovers the left tackle, allowing him to go downfield and receive the pass, which is the trick. It's a tackle-eligible play, which you can read about here. Technically, the WR who falls over on the play is the right tackle, and if he ran downfield, the team would get penalized. But he could've done something more relevant than playing dead.
Arkansas State's head coach basically confirmed this explanation to NFL.com:
Because of the formation we were in for that fake punt, Booker was covered up and couldn't go downfield, or it would be a penalty. So we said, 'What do we want to do with him? Do we want to bubble him or peel him out?' Someone said let's just let him be a fainting goat. I loved it, so we just put that in.
(Now that we know the actual reasoning, we will ignore it, and continue laughing, because it is absolutely hilarious whether it's explainable or not.)