YINCE YOUNG was on the move, and so was SI photographer Robert Beck. It was the third quarter of the 2006 Rose Bowl, and Young's Texas Longhorns—trailing by a point—were slicing through USC's defense, marching from their own 20-yard line to the Trojans' 14 in six plays and less than two minutes of game clock. That posed a problem for Beck, who had to hustle down the sideline to get in position for a potential Longhorns touchdown. "I'm running down there, they start their play—I don't even have a spot yet. I'm not even standing still," Beck recalls. "[Young] starts moving, and he's running toward me. We were heading toward the same corner at the same time. I must have had a head start because I'm not as fast as Vince Young."
As Young broke a tackle and dived toward the right pylon, Beck had his wide-angle lens ready. "We got there at the same time. I grabbed the camera around my neck and got that picture," Beck says. "Total luck." Maybe Texas was a bit lucky that night too, but both Young and Beck were rewarded for their hustle: The quarterback's diving score helped the underdog Longhorns to a 41--38 national title win, and the photographer's shot ended up on the cover of SI.
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