Monday, October 19, 2009 , Posted by Christopher Byrne at 10:29 PM, under Atlanta Falcons, College Football, Southeastern Conference
Appearances are everything, especially when the impact the outcome of the game (or at least play a major part in the outcome. Two weeks ago, the Southeastern Conference acknowledged that the officiating crew improperly called an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty that helped give LSU excellent field position to snatch victory from the University of Georgia.
That same crew worked the Arkansas - Florida game this past Saturday. Once again the made a critical call, this time a personal foul penalty, that gave Florida the ball on the Arkansas 10-yard line. Of course Florida tied the game on the next play and went on to win.
So what does the SEC reportedly tell Arkansas today? The same officiating crew blew that call as well.
From the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
The penalty gave the Gators the ball on the Arkansas 10-yard line, and they scored on the next play to tie the game at 20. Arkansas athletic director Jeff Long said Monday the school had expressed its concerns to the league.
The league said schools can send in plays after each game for review. The SEC said it told Arkansas "there was no evidence on the video to support the personal foul penalty."
One blown call in one huge game, fans and media might give the crew a pass. But a second blown call by the same crew in a big game two weeks later? On appearances, something just doesn't smell right even though it very well may be on the up and up.
So unless the replay rules are changed to allow review of calls like this, the referees just need to sit back and get ready, because there is some explaining to do.
If not, the SEC needs to think about sitting that crew down for a rest or take them off of the big games.