It's a moment that seems to occur in almost every modern fantasy, sword-and-sandal, or sci-fi movie.
At a pivotal point in a major battle, one side unveils an as-yet-unseen weapon: some large being or object (or a regular man atop a large being or object) that immediately strikes fear into the hearts of their opponents. The brave, on this now-disadvantaged side, sound the alarm, alerting those at their side to be prepared for this new element.
Eventually word or sight reaches the witty one of the bunch, who intones something along the lines of, "Oh, how great, they've got one of those."
We imagine even Ohio State University football's got one of those characters, and he's dusting off that sarcasm right about now. On Tuesday, the University of Minnesota unveiled the depth chart for its Saturday morning game against the Buckeyes.
At starting right tackle, the list features Daniel Faalele, the Gophers' Australian-born freshman recruit who some had theorized wouldn't play until next year. The thought was the team would "red-shirt" the young man as he learns how to ... play organized football.
Faalele only picked the game up as a junior in high school. He was instantly pretty good at it, at least enough to suit up for the prestigious IMG Academy sports factory, which has produced dozens of pro football players.
What he lacks in experience, Faalele makes up for in natural gifts, like the fact he's "powerful," and has "quick feet and extraordinary agility for his size."
About that size. Faalele's listed at a towering 6-foot-9, or one inch shorter than the tallest player currently in the NFL. (Four others come in at 6'9" [nice], and all five of these NFL behemoths play offensive tackle, like Faalele.) As for weight, the Gophers roster puts Faalele at 400 pounds, exactly, though that might change one way or another as he gets deeper into a college-level nutrition and conditioning program.
Sure, Ohio State may have a 6-0 record and be ranked No. 3 in the country. But they don't have anyone within 80 pounds of Faalele.
Minnesota's 3-2, and a huge underdog going into this game. So it's doing what underdogs since David have done: deploying a secret weapon. Only in this case, it's as if David's secret weapon was that he had a Goliath of his own.