Monday, October 5, 2009

Sportsmanship? Try Disgrace

Another game ruined by the refs.

You'd think the esurient NCAA executives would want as much entertainment value for their gazillion dollar college football enterprise as possible. Instead, they harp on the issue of sportsmanship and use that word to suck all of the fun out of games.

College football referees are told not to allow excessive celebrations when touchdowns are scored. This rule is intended to cut down on the "look at me" attitude displayed by players and the taunting that used to go on. Basically, the sportsmanship rule was put in place to counteract the gong show that took place at the University of Miami. Those Miami teams of the late 80's and early 90's looked like a who's who of police reports with assaults, guns, rapes, drugs, and all sorts of neat stuff.

But the excessive celebration rules have gone too far the other direction. The Georgia/LSU game this weekend proved that. Georgia scores a potential winning touchdown with one minute left and the receiver who scored runs and jumps into the arms of his teammates in pure ecstasy.

Flag. 15 yard penalty for excessive celebration to be assessed on the kickoff.

Excuse me? He just possibly won the game and you're going to flag him for celebrating with his team?

The call quite possibly changed the outcome of the game as LSU suddenly needed only a few extra yards to kick a game winning field goal (the Tigers actually won on a break away run against a stunned Georgia defense.) The call became the talking point of the post game show:

When a post game wrap up is centered around a referee call, that's not a good sign, especially when it's a call that doesn't occur during a play. Let it go, refs. Let the players decide the games.

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