Sports writer Holly Anderson of SI.com and EveryDayShouldBeSaturday.com has created a national celebration most notably on Twitter whenever a big guy rumbles into the end zone. She calls them Fat Guy Touchdowns.
Boise State senior Mike Atkinson (6-foot, 306 pounds) a nose tackle nicknamed Canadian Bacon earned his spot in Fat Guy Touchdown lore last week with a game-winning, 36-yard interception return for a touchdown.
Heres what Atkinson had to say about his feat:
Question: Had you heard of a Fat Guy Touchdown before?
Answer: Id never heard of it before. I did see it. I actually thought it was pretty funny because everybody loves to see a fat guy get a touchdown, right? It doesnt really happen often, so when it does, youve got to do something about it.
Q: Do you notice when linemen score?
A: One incident I can think of is B.J. Raji for the Packers, when he got his interception last year. There were jokes everywhere about that.
Q: Do you actually dream about a pick six as a lineman?
A: Yeah, we talk about it all the time. If I get the ball, Im taking it to the house. Im not getting tackled. In the back of your mind, youre like, Hey, its probably not going to happen. But when it does, the ball sticks to my hand, Im just trying to get to the end zone.
Q: Have you watched the play?
A: Ive seen it about 10 times. Just from people sending me links on Facebook.
Q: Howd you do? Break down your return.
A: I caught the ball. I was a little surprised. I just reacted as fast as I could. And I saw the receiver come up beside me, when he dove I saw him dive so I did my little high-step thing. When I got there, the hard part wasnt running to the end zone. It was getting hit in the chest and the head (by teammates). It just stopped me from breathing. I was struggling a bit on the sideline after that. Youve got 100 guys pounding on your chest.
Q: You score a surprise touchdown. What do you do?
A: You just celebrate with your teammates. Were always told to love them up when somebody does something good, since you cant really celebrate. Coach (Chris Petersen) really harps on that. You get a penalty, thats not good. Something will happen.
Q: Did you get any memorable messages after the game?
A: There was definitely hundreds of text messages, just blowing up my phone.
Q: We all know youve got good athleticism for your size. How much confidence do you have that you can make a play in that situation?
A: I feel like Ive been working on that my whole life. Im not one of those guys who grew up skinny and just put all this weight on to play football. Im one of those guys whos just been big my whole life. Im used to carrying the weight and I think thats giving me an advantage now.
Q: When did you come to that realization that you were just going to be a big person?
A: From birth.