East Lansing — Michigan State committed its share of penalties in Saturday’s loss to Notre Dame — nine for a total of 97 yards, in fact.
However, it was one that wasn’t called that has the Fighting Irish upset.
It came in the first quarter when Notre Dame quarterback Brandon Wimbush scrambled out of the pocket and was tackled by Michigan State linebacker Joe Bachie. As Wimbush went to the ground, Spartans senior Chris Frey dove on top of Wimbush and made helmet-to-helmet contact with Wimbush.
There was no penalty called and on Tuesday, Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly said the play had been turned in for review.
“I don’t know what, if any, repercussions would be relative to the on-field crew for the ACC or for the Big Ten replay crew, which was supposed to be monitoring that situation,” Kelly said. “But it was egregious, and there’s no other way to look at that kind of hit. That has no place in the game.”
Kelly added his team had the same problem last season when receiver Torii Hunter Jr. was knocked out of a game against Texas and no penalty was called. It’s added to frustration, Kelly says, over how the targeting rule is applied on a weekly basis.
“We had it evaluated, and obviously felt that they missed that call,” Kelly said of the hit by Frey. “You know, it’s extremely frustrating as a head coach in this profession that you see — where I really have a hard time with this whole targeting rule in itself is that young men don’t get many opportunities to play this game. I think I was watching a game on the way back on the bus, and there was a young man thrown out of the game trying to make a tackle, just trying to make a tackle, and then we have this instance when this young man was not trying to make a tackle.
“We can’t seem to get that right, and we have a replay official that is supposed to be looking that. That is extremely frustrating when somebody has to be thrown out of a game trying to make a tackle, somebody is still in the game, and he’s not trying to make a tackle.”