It's the first drive of the game and Michigan coems out in a two-TE set with two receivers split out to Denard's left. Fitz Toussaint is lined up in the backfield next to Denard.
As the ball is snapped, Michigan's two receivers as well as Devin Funchess (TE on the top of the screen) release. Denard immediately looks out to the nickelback lined up over Michigan's slot receiver. Toussaint will come across Denard's face for a handoff.
At this point, Denard sees what he wants: UMass' secondary hasn't moved and more importantly, the linebackers are staring into the backfield and ignoring Devin Funchess (arrow) who has a clear lane through the center of the field.
Denard is pulling back to throw to Funchess who is wide open. There's only one problem: Patrick Omameh (highlighted) who is an ineligible receiver, is already two yards beyond the line of scrimmage. This, as you might already know, is a penalty.
As Denard lets go of the ball, Omameh is already four yards downfield run blocking. This is still illegal.
Ball in the air, Omameh blocking downfield...
...touchdown. No flags. Wheeee.
This is super illegal. Michigan should have been flagged and the touchdown should have been taken away. If the UMass linebackers were keying on Michigan's guards for run/pass clues, having one of the guards release 5 yards downfield on the snap is a pretty clear sign that this is a running play. Look at the offensive line on the first QB Oh Noes of 2010:
The line of scrimmage here is the 31 yard line. The furthest any of Michigan's linemen get upfield before the throw is the 30 yard line. That's a tough call for the refs to make. Omameh scampering downfield is not.
The positive sign from this play, however, is that Borges appears to be learning how to use the threat of Denard's legs as a way to set up easy completions. The one tweak here is the use of Devin Funchess to catch the seam route rather than a slot receiver. One of the concerns with this personnel is that if Funchess can't develop into a reliable run-blocker, defenses will start keying in on him as a receiver and disregard the play action. But that's a worry for another time. Right now, Funchess is a problem for just about every defense and it's nice to see Borges utilizing his skillset.