ESPN had a tall order this evening. Two bottom feeding Pac 12 teams playing during a close World Series game as well as going up against popular shows like Jersey Shore, The League, and It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia. Not helping was the fact UCLA was getting ridiculously crushed 42-7 as the first half was winding down (Neuheisel a TV analyst by the end of November perhaps?)
Enter Jacen Lankow, the alleged streaker dressed up as referee, to spice up the night. ESPN followed the television protocol of not showing the ensuing fun and actually had a juicier story unfolding as a pretty substantial brawl which led to ejections broke out on the field. Meanwhile, Lankow continued on before being corralled as you see below. Before you watch this video, I am giving you some strong advice to turn down the volume as the cameraman's shrill cheers for the event are a bit painful on the ears. It's pretty clear, given the streaker was zoomed in on before he even entered the field of play, that he was open about his intentions.
Who doesn't like a good video of a drunken streaker getting chased down by authority figures?
ESPN shrugged off the incident and focused on the brawl and subsequent ejections.
It used to be that not showing these type of incidents on camera prevented people from ever seeing the incident play out. However with smaller video cameras and cell phones, in addition to Youtube, it's pretty much standard now for these sophomoric guilty pleasure videos to always see the light of day.
It's unclear if Lankow intended to get caught or just didn't really have an exit strategy. Regardless he seemed to lack good field vision as he was bottled up near the end zone. All in all, he lasted 20 seconds of on field antics before getting tackled. Not bad, but not that impressive, which popular to contrary belief is not Arizona's school saying.
Below is how it looked on ESPN. The most disdain Rece Davis can conjure up is calling Lankow a "knucklehead." Weren't we all back in college?
Watching this made me think back when I witnessed one of the most epic streaker escapes at a football game of all time. Barry Sanders like moves mixed with Chris Johnson like speed. He hurdled back into the stands after running the entire field being chased and seemingly cornered several times. The heftier security guys couldn't jump back into the crowd to chase him down and to this day I think he got away as he made it into the concourse tunnel without any hint of a chase behind him. This was really before the explosion of Youtube and I yearn for footage of it to this day.
Shunned by traditional media, reviled by authority figures, and beloved by the web and the common drunken fan. I'd imagine that some sporting events are too "holy" for lack of a better word to disrupt, but UCLA vs. Arizona in a lopsided affair? Young rebel rousers certainly get my stamp of approval under those conditions.