The Center for Sports Cliché Control reported an outbreak of “Hail Mary pass” this past weekend following the Wisconsin-Michigan State game. Writers and sportscasters, locally and nationwide, overwhelmed readers and audiences with the most offensive, religion-related sports cliché ever as they described the conclusion of the Badgers-Spartans contest.

The CSCC noted that the sight and sound of the “Hail Mary pass” cliché follows no pattern other than to be written or broadcast when a long, desperation pass results in a game-changing touchdown. While it strikes the college and professional games numerous times every season, there is no vaccine to combat it. With more than half of their respective seasons remaining, “Hail Mary pass” cliché users could have several opportunities in which to infect even larger populations of sports fans.

While studies are inconclusive, CSCC studies indicate that treatment is untested and that there is no cure for the sports media’s addiction to the “Hail Mary pass” cliché. Thus, it is expected that practitioners in the sports media field will continue their cliché-ridden ways when it comes to describing the aforementioned football occurrence.

Sports historians cannot agree on the origins of the term, but many attribute it to the Boston College-Miami game on Nov. 23, 1984, when, with no time remaining, BC quarterback Doug Flutie completed a 49-yard touchdown pass to Gerard Phelan and defeated the Hurricanes 47-45

While Catholic leadership has not spoken officially or publicly about the term, individual Catholics are encouraged to remember the importance of the words “Hail Mary” in their history, and to say them prayerfully, especially for sports writers and announcers who perpetuate the “Hail Mary pass” cliché and who are in need of divine help in order to recover from it.