Criticizing Calls

Officiating is a vital part of every football game at every level.

Whether you are the beneficiary of a “holding call” that brings back a long score by your opponent or the victim of a pass interference call that keeps their drive alive….making the correct call is extremely important in the outcome of so many games. At the high school level there is rarely the technology available to review a call so it comes down to the basic “human” factor of an official’s judgement..right or wrong. It may have a big impact on a win or loss, which may affect getting into playoffs, but it is not life and death and certainly not a matter of millions of dollars being at stake.

You just have to believe the men did their best and accept where the chips fall.

The college game is a whole different situation. There are huge implications in FBS games. Yes, and millions of dollars can be at stake. Today, there is technology available that gives officiating crews the opportunity to review calls and correct errors. Should this capability be available at every game in the big money arena of college ball? Is too much at stake to leave results to chance of error?

Many questions might be considered. Should a Commissioner have the right to “fine and suspend” a team’s coach? Is criticizing a call a grievous action?

Does this only apply to criticism in the media….or can it be applied to “actions on the sidelines”? What happened to free speech anyhow? One might wonder the fairness of the fine for criticizing officials when that conference had already suspended officials for inaccuracies this season. How about the amount….$30,000 is a ton of money…and incidentally…where will that fine go. Maybe to fund more officials training. Is this an example of dualities? On the one hand football officials should be above reproach (at least in the paper) while at the same time..everything else is about the money. Bad calls can have a tremendous affect on who wins and ultimately who gets to play for the big pay.

What do you think? Ultimately, the judgment of the officials has to be dependable and correct in as many cases as possible for the game to be fairly played. And they are human. But is it also OK that there can be a verdict without a trial?