You know the colloquialism about how its important to be prepared? That's certainly true in football, where depth charts are as much a part of game planning as designing a nickel package on defense.
Well, no one realizes just how important being thoroughly prepared for every situation is than Mission Hills (Calif.) Bishop Alemany School football coach Dean Herrington. That's because his team's chances at a homecoming victory were sabotaged by its inability to field a backup holder for an extra point.
The play in question came late in Alemany's 13-12 loss to Los Angeles (Calif.) Dorsey High, which entered the game at Alemany as a significant underdog. Alemany had finally reached the end zone, pulling within a point in the process. All the Warriors needed to tie was to convert an extra point.
That's where the Warriors' problems began. The team's regular holder, quarterback Devon Dunn, had been knocked out of the game with a concussion. That meant the team needed to use a backup holder on the kick.
While Alemany technically had a backup holder on the depth chart, the team couldn't decide whether or not to actually use him, because he hadn't ever held for a kick before. In fact, the team was so confused, the Warriors called two consecutive timeouts trying to determine who should hold for the kick.
"We have a backup holder," Herrington told the Los Angeles Times. "We just didn't work with him."
Eventually, Herrington decided that the team had a better chance of winning if it just went for two. After spending two timeouts game planning for an eventual conversion, Dorsey stopped a pass attempt from backup quarterback Deron Smith, ensuring that Dorsey would escape with a win.
Naturally, even if Alemany had hit the extra point, that hardly guarantees that it would have won in overtime. Still, attempting an extra point would have given the Warriors new life and an even shot at a victory.
That was deemed impossible thanks to a surprising set of circumstances which can serve as another point of reference for those who like to remind us that extra preparedness is always important, even when you think you have everything under control.
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