This is the type of gesture that can't help but bring a smile to your face, force a tear to your eye, and send a reminder to your heart that it actually still exists. Not that any honorary tribute made to commemorate a fallen member of your opposition is more noble than any other. It's just that this one felt a little more special because of how unnecessary it was. Sam Foltz didn't tragically pass within the last week. He had no connection to the University Of Oregon. That, however, didn't stop them from going out of their way to stress that the former punter of a non-conference opponent - who they faced for the first time in God knows how long this past weekend - is gone but not forgotten. The bouquet? The placement on the the 27 yard line? That was preplanned. Considering the timing, it wasn't something they felt forced to do. It was something they felt compelled to do.
The world can be such a terrible place sometimes that disasters, like the one that cost Sam Foltz his life, can get swept under the rug after a quick ring around the 24 hour news cycle. Honestly, before Nebraska lined up with ten men on the field to memorialize their teammate, his horrific death during the offseason had slipped my mind. I hardly think I am the only one either. Sadly, with catastrophes taking place seemingly bi-weekly, it's difficult to keep track and properly mourn them all. Credit to the University Of Oregon for doing so by paying their respects to the memory of a competitor long after it would be treated as a sign of disrespect not to. It's moments that transcend sports- such as this one - that make sports about so much more than the game.