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Subject: Re: I think that the refs know what they signed up for...


Author:
An Observer
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Date Posted: 09:27:27 01/18/22 Tue
In reply to: Go Green 's message, "I think that the refs know what they signed up for..." on 22:00:33 01/16/22 Sun

You are absolutely correct that referees and umpires are, like children, ideally invisible. But we know that they are not invincible. That's why we have instant replay.

It's interesting that you say, "Rules are rules." That's a reasonable statement on its own but, as we saw in the Harvard-Princeton situation, rules are rules *BUT* judgment is still difficult to avoid.

For example, by the rules as printed in the rule book, Article 7 carries the day and Harvard has no case.

But both the NCAA and the television rules analyst to whom I spoke agree that reviewing by video replay a coach's request for a time-out is starting down a slippery slope that they would prefer to avoid. That's the counterargument and the only basis for Harvard's case.

Last night, I was driving home and listening to CBS Sports Radio. The late night host McPherson said, and I quote, "All sports and football in particular are meaningless." He was irate about the officiating over the weekend.

This is a textbook example of letting perfect be the enemy of the good.

The officiating in the NFL and even in most college football games is excellent these days. That is the impact of instant replay. The egregious mistakes have been mostly eliminated, even though they clearly still happen from time to time.

The big issue is that, with the regular use of replay, we now expect that the officiating will be perfect. We have raised our standards precisely because the rising tide has lifted all officiating boats.

And ironically, when a unfortunate team of Ivy referees use video replay in a good faith effort to check and correct their own work, they are criticized and punished for it. These guys just can't win.

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[> [> [> [> [> Subject: Re: I think that the refs know what they signed up for...


Author:
Ed
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Date Posted: 10:11:31 01/18/22 Tue

AO - in your communication with the referees regarding the replay timeout in the P-H game, did the officials say they felt the correct call was made ie awarding P the timeout after replay review? I had an email exchange with one of the former referees that provides commentary during FBS televised games, and his comments are below regarding the P-H situation:

In that situation replay should not have awarded the timeout. The only time replay can get involved in a timeout situation is when a coach signals for one at the end of a half. Replay can look at when the official signaled to grant the timeout in relation to the game clock expiring.

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[> [> [> [> [> [> Subject: Re: I think that the refs know what they signed up for...


Author:
An Observer
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Date Posted: 10:45:58 01/18/22 Tue

Ed, both referees to whom I spoke wanted to give a lot of context to their answers. The NCAA in particular said that the situation would garner a lot of attention and was "unfortunate."

Both referees were consistent in saying that reviewing a coach's request to call time out via video replay starts us down the slippery slope of coaches gaming the system by discretely signaling before the play starts and then seeing whether the result is favorable to their team.

The NCAA in particular volunteered that Surace was clearly not trying to game the system as he had wandered a couple yards onto the field in his attempt to get the officials' attention. The NCAA had obviously already reviewed the H-P game by the time I called them.

But without a doubt, there is judgment involved.

I asked both referees, "Is there any language in the NCAA rule book which supersedes Article 7?" In both cases, the answer was no.

I also asked both referees, "If you had been the head of the officiating crew that day, would you have granted the time out?" In both cases, the answer was no.

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[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Subject: going forward ... a modest proposal


Author:
ivy guy
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Date Posted: 11:12:38 01/18/22 Tue

I suggest that the League adopt a minor accomodation for the 2+ overtime sitiation:

Allow the HC to stand next to the linesman (on the 2 yard line) on these plays--in the event a TO is called.
This may have avoided the unfortunate H-P situation, and would have no negative impact on the course of play.

The IL could petition the NCAA to allow this rule change for league play, similar to previous accomodations for kickoffs.

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[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Subject: Re: I think that the refs know what they signed up for...


Author:
Ed
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Date Posted: 12:16:05 01/18/22 Tue

Thanks for sharing more AO. So the NCAA and two former rules experts have stated that they would not have granted Princeton the timeout. Is that enough for all the Princeton fans in this issue? Seems like the only posters in this board who feel the timeout should have been granted are Princeton fans.

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[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Subject: Re: I think that the refs know what they signed up for...


Author:
sparman
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Date Posted: 14:02:12 01/18/22 Tue

Not for me, until they explain the argument for how they can just ignore the express language of what Article (or is it Rule?) 7.

As I have suggested before, it may be that Article 7 was overlooked when implementing overtime rules, and whether that is true or not, that people now realize they want to amend the rule to correct what they see as a deficiency. But until the rule is amended, it still operates as written (same as any other rule), right?

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