The controversial outcome of Clearfield's 13-7 playoff victory over West Jordan last week will stand, while one of the four-man officiating crew working the game has been dropped.
The much-publicized final-play finish - a West Jordan field goal attempt being blocked by Clearfield, with the ball kicked by a Falcon player and picked up by Clearfield's Jeff Kirkman and returned for the game-winning touchdown as time expired - has been the fodder of conversation among many circles of prep football fans this weekend. Any kick - inadvertant or purposeful - is against the rules in football, but no penalty was called.West Jordan coaches and officials lodged a protest, saying that an after-the-fact protest is allowed when the incident in question occurs on the game's final play. Utah High School Activities Association officials ruled that its bylaws did not allow the protested game to be replayed, although they did review game films Monday.
The official who was responsible to be in position for making a call on the kicking incident has since been released from state's officiating rotation, said Dee Burton, UHSAA associate director and arbiter. While calling the situation "unfortunate," Burton added that neither the game nor the final play will be replayed, nor will there be an overtime-type contest allowed between the two teams, as hoped for by some West Jordan officials.
PLAYOFF SKED: For a listing of this week's 4A and 3A quarterfinal times and sites, as well as those for the 1A and 2A semifinals, please see the prep football playoff schedule in the Scoreboard section on page D6.
REF REPRISE: Ironically, the UHSAA had asked the state's football coaches if they wanted to increase the officiating crews from four members to five for the regular season, but the coaches voted it down. Coincidently, five-member crews already were assigned to work the remainder of the 4A playoffs.
INDIVIDUAL HIGHLIGHTS: Some of the top prep player performances from last week's playoff action: Big-number passing performances have been down somewhat this season, but here's a couple of note from 4A first-rounds. Provo's Rick Jorgensen completed 20 of 37 attempts for 384 yards and five TDs - three going to Terrance Saluone - in the Bulldogs' 33-12 win over Alta. And Bonneville sophomore QB Ryan Webber needed only the first half to complete 8 of 11 passes for 150 yards and three scores to start the Lakers' 38-3 rout of Cyprus.
As has been the trend this year, the biggest numbers have been posted by the running backs - especially in the 3A ranks. Look at these outings: Dixie's Tyler Wilkinson rushed 26 times for 260 yards and four TDs and logged a 97-yard kickoff return for a fifth score; Bear River's Jared Burnham ran 25 times for 210 yars and three touchdowns; Springville's John Penrod carried the ball 22 times for 192 yards and four TDs; and Bountiful's Chris Jones managed 160 yards on just 13 carries and four scores.
Other top rushers in the 100-plus yardage club included Milford's Chris Barnes (206 yards, 1 TD), Spanish Fork's Matt Marzialle (202 yards, 1 TD), Skyline's Jake Marshall (157 yards, 1 TD), Milford's Brandon Griffith (152 yards, 2 TDs), Orem's Tyler Nelson (148 yards, 2 TDs rushing and 2 TDs passing), North Summit's Matt Bates (131 yards, 3 TDs), Park City's Mike Packard (119 yards, 1 TD), Orem's Ed Jarvis (111 yards, 1 TD), and Box Elder's Jamie Greer (107 yards, 1 TD). And Skyline's Adam Kershaw only carried the ball twice, gaining 89 yards and scoring on both rushing attempts.
Multiple scorers include Delta's Joe Myers (3 rushing TDs), Sky View's Greg Robertson (2 TD runs, 1 TD pass) and Park City's Justin Christensen (2 TD runs, 1 TD reception).