GIFs are amazing, but they’re not all the same level of amazing. Some GIFs are shallow, while others unpack a whole world, 24 frames per second. Here is a GIF of FSU blocking Miami’s extra point attempt to keep the ‘Noles ahead and secure a Seminole win. Let’s delve into each player’s reaction, as they are all magnificent and some disturbing. (Click here for a larger, slowed down version.)
Let’s start with the FSU side of the ball. Every player is thrilled with the block, and they all celebrate like you would expect. All except for #20 Trey Marshall. Either Marshall is not aware of what this block means or knows Miami still has 3 timeouts with 90 seconds left on the clock. Or he is the most stoic person on the face of the planet. Whatever it is, while others celebrate, Marshall watches the ball go wide, shrugs, and lightly trots to the side line. Loosen up, Marshall.
But the real fun is in observing the Hurricanes’ reactions. When you do something 72 times and always get the same result, you tend to think of it as a constant. Michael Badgley had previously attempted 72 extra points, and each one went through the uprights (because that’s what extra points are supposed to do). However, #73 did not do what extra points are supposed to do. Upon seeing the attempt fail Badgly, can only stare in wonderment and confusion.
Next to him, Evan Shirreffs, #16, has his world shaken. He also stares, but as if his eyes have deceived him. What evil has done this? Extra points go through the uprights, not around them. As realization finally takes it’s hold on young Shirreffs’ brain that this is not some illusion and that extra points can be missed, he places his hand on the ground to try and settle himself but he cannot. Shirreffs will never be the same.
Terry McCray, #23, begins the play apparently unaware that Tarvarus McFadden will attempt to block the extra point, as if that cannot be done. As McFadden blows past him, McCray can only follow with his head and misses the extra point attempt. He is left with so many questions as he takes a few faulty steps toward the Seminole’s sideline. “What happened? Guys, can somebody fill me in here? Why is the ball over there?”
Jacob Pugh, #16 in white, buries the man across from him and, we are forced to believe that that man longer exists on this plain of existence. Fare thee well young Hurricane. May you live on in Dimension X believing Miami has for ever tied Florida State.
As we continue down the line, we find #78, Tyree St. Louis. Somewhere during this play, and it is not clear where, St. Louis’ brain shattered into a million pieces. While FSU players run to the side line in jubilation St. Louis breaks into a half-hearted dance. He does not know the steps of this dance, but his body does. He squeezes his knees together, pushes them back apart and throws out his right hand with such panache. His left hand follows but not with the same gusto. Maybe St. Louis was always dancing. Maybe he will not ever stop.
#63, Danny Isidora, and #55, Frank Gabriel, next to him know too well what has happened and why. Danny is mad! This man next to him has failed him. Danny pushes Frank but does it with his shoulder? Frank is left to wonder why Danny is mad at him and how is it that Danny has no idea how to push a man.
We have now entered the region of the GIF referred to as the Surrender Cobra’s Waste. Both #52, Kc McDermott, and #73, Trevor Darling, are trapped in the Surrender Cobra’s Waste, but each affliction is different. McDermott claps his hands to his ears where they are forever stuck and begins the long march to the sideline. Meanwhile, Darling rips his hands from his ears slamming them into his knees. Darling will not be stuck in the Surrender Cobra’s Waste! What Darling does not know is that once you have entered the Waste, there is no leaving.
Malik Mayweather, #31, and David Njoku, #86, have the same initial reaction: Wait. What? Oh.... Mayweather shrugs, claps and begins to move on with his life while Njoku is not quite ready. He grasps at nothingness trying to hold on to what is unclear. But hold on he will.