With apologies to my co-blogger here, this is my favorite college football highlight. It's Percy Harvin running the counter against South Carolina in 2008 for great effect. Why? For a number of reasons.
First, it's from 2008. That was the last year that Florida had an offense that actually looked good against real defenses. It's not from that long ago, but yes, there's a little nostalgia mixed in there. Thanks for the memories, Steve Addazio and Charlie Weis!
Second, it shows just how incredible a weapon Percy Harvin was. While Tim Tebow was undeniably a huge part of Urban Meyer's two great offensive years of 2007-08, Harvin was the supercharger that really made it go. He made it possible for the offense to never be wrong. If the defense went with a run stuffing plan with him in the backfield, he could motion out wide. If they went nickel with him in the game as a wideout, he could motion to the backfield and take the handoff for an effective run play.
He'd often line up in the slot, which again would allow him to either allow him to abuse a linebacker as a wide receiver or a defensive back would get mauled by a blocker on a run play. He was truly a credible threat at either position, and those kinds of players are very, very rare. Steve Spurrier said after this game that he'd love to have had Harvin running out of the I-formation just to see what he could do. That's how good Harvin was.
Third, I'd argue this counter run was his signature play. It starts with him in the slot and he motions to the backfield on what looks like a sweep. The defense adjusts over expecting that, but Harvin plants his foot and immediately takes off in the other direction behind the pulling guard. It was so deadly not just because Harvin was fast, but because he went from zero to full speed about as quickly as anyone I've ever seen could. His ability to accelerate is just about unparalleled. It is a play that highlights everything that made him so good, and he ran well all of his career. He famously changed the momentum of the 2006 SEC Championship Game with this play.
What are your favorite highlights? Let's hear about them in the comments.