The last blog posted, I indicated that I would explain how a coach decides when to punt the ball on 4th down or run a play. The coach will look at several factors. The first how many yards does the offense need to get the first down. If they have 10 yards to go, most likely they will punt unless it is close to the end of the game and they are behind. If time is about to run out and they are behind in points, they will run a play as there is not much to lose. If the offense has 1 yard or less, they might go for it depending on where they are on the field. The issue with this decision is that if the offense does not make it on 4th down when a play is run, the offense turns it over to the other team where the offense finished the play.
A coach might also choose to fake a punt. The offense lines up like they are going to punt the ball and then run a play. The consequences are the same not making the yardage. It is the same as running a play on 4th down.
Tomorrow's post will be about penalties. This will get you to the point of being able to watch the BCS Championship game with a bit more knowledge. Maybe it will make it more fun to watch.