In the world of football, the one-point safety is the equivalent of Big Foot, the chupacabra and Captain Ahab’s white whale all rolled into one. It’s talked about, but rarely seen.
It most recently occurred in the 2013 Fiesta Bowl, when Oregon notched the ultra-rare scoring play in its 35-17 defeat of Kansas State. Before that, Texas registered a one-point safety in a 26-13 win over Texas A&M in 2004. Beyond that, no one can pinpoint any other examples.
We had another one this season, this time in Division III, and we now have video of the play. And it’s crazier than the other two examples combined.
Division III Bluffton (Ohio) utilized a one-point safety to engineer a 24-17 upset of then-No. 9 Franklin (Ind.), snapping the Grizzlies’ 31-game conference winning streak. Franklin had to go well out of its way to make it happen, advancing the ball nearly to the 15-yard line before an ill-advised lateral saw the ball tumbled all the way back to the end zone.
Statistically speaking, we could see American football continue unchanged for the next 150 years and never see a play like this repeated.