BYU football: Big call is still debatable

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    Sept. 11, 2008 3:53 p.m.

    I never thought I'd would live to see the game that a PAC 10 ref. would throw a flag that did not benefit a PAC 10 team. AMEEEEENNNNNNN!

  • Smutz
    Sept. 10, 2008 1:39 a.m.

    I think BYU should demonstrate courage and class by coming up with a game ball used last Saturday and awarding it to the true hero of the contest--the referee who made that very, very sad call.

  • EnuffAlready
    Sept. 9, 2008 8:46 p.m.

    An opinion is just an opinion. A rule is an absolute rule. (BYU 28, U of W 27)

    There is no debate.

  • Re:fouls called
    Sept. 9, 2008 8:18 p.m.

    There were 4 penalties called against UW: (1) after their first or second touchdown they were penalized (which usually affects the game very little); (2) the "intentional grounding call during the final drive (whichactually helped keep the drive alive); the excessive celebration call on Locker (which is also usually a safe penalty as it rarely affects the outcome); and (4) the offsides on the final onsides kick (which also kept the game alive). Note that on every case these were "safe" penalties to call against UW. From the refs' point of view they did their part to deliver the best possible outcome for their conference. It's not their fault UW couldn't deliver when they had handed everything to them.

    Truth is, BYU won in spite of the refs, not because of them.

  • Oregonian
    Sept. 9, 2008 6:34 p.m.

    As ron (5:35am) metioned earlier, what would be the reaction if the situation was reversed. Would the national media give a hoot if BYU "lost" the game because Unga or Hall threw the ball in the air? It wouldn't get air time because the right team won.

  • BYU Fan
    Sept. 9, 2008 6:32 p.m.

    Lets go ahead and give the whinners a forfeit! Forfeit the game so the babies will stop whining! I have never seen such a juvenile, immature display of bad sportsmanship! Contrats to some of you who have given a new meaning to bad sportsmanship!

  • Idaho Cougar Fan
    Sept. 9, 2008 6:12 p.m.

    If UW made the extra point and then BYU won the game in overtime, no one would be talking about it right now. Just because the BCS team got the raw end of the deal that all the media is still all over it. As long as BYU continues to win, they will move up in the standings. Vs UCLA, at TCU, at Air Force (looks better than New Mexico), and at Utah give the schedule more credibility. If BYU takes care of business, I think they can overcome anybody in the Non BCS ahead of them (ECU) and be playing in January!

  • Missing The Point
    Sept. 9, 2008 6:06 p.m.

    I have read about this "bad" call on every single BYU article since the end of the game. The point everyone is missing is that if UW had made the PAT, no one would be complaining about the call.

    No one.

    So why complain now.

  • Blocked Kick
    Sept. 9, 2008 4:53 p.m.

    A blocked kick is one of the purest examples in sports of a team taking their destiny into their own hands. Trying to deny a team its victory on subjective discussions is one of the most impure aspects of sports. That is why most people who truly love the game avoid such attempts.

    I am a college football fan. My 3 favorite teams are, in this order BYU, Alabama, and Utah. That may make me a freak, but it certainly makes life and sports more enjoyable for me. I'm saddened by the anger and hatred that exists these days in sports and the world today. You are not a better person with any bragging rights if your team wins. However, you have devalued yourself if you behave as if you are a better person because your team won.

  • PAC10 Refs
    Sept. 9, 2008 4:43 p.m.

    I just wish a PAC10 ref would call a holding penalty on a PAC10 team. On that 4th and 10 there should have been a holding penalty called... then this wouldn't even had been a discussion... PAC10 does not want to be embarrassed by a MWC team.

  • Henry Drummond
    Sept. 9, 2008 3:43 p.m.

    Just because the rule is sort of dumb isn't a reason to criticize the official for enforcing it. I would suspect in the future there will be two penalties. One for inappropriate celebration (5 yards) and one for taunting of the opponent (15 yards).

  • rulesrulesrulesrulesrulesrules
    Sept. 9, 2008 3:26 p.m.

    It's a rule.

    What do you think Locker was doing during the meeting when the PAC-10 officials came in and said "This is what they are looking at, this may cost you a game".

    This will be used as an example to every player and coach across the country how in one instance you can win the game, and a stupid move, you lose it.

    This rests directly at Locker's feet. He is the one May, Holz, and all the ESPN has-beens should be talking about.

    There is no way this detracts from a Big BYU W, the same as if he ran out of bounds 2 yards before the endzone, or a reciever caught the ball out of bounds.

    They are rules, and cannot be obliviated because of "discretion", or else you are then cheating the other team.

    Geeze, much ado about nothing.

  • to anonymous @ 1:54
    Sept. 9, 2008 3:15 p.m.

    Unfortunately we all can't be as perfect as the u of u fans that blog their BYU hatred all over these comments. I tell you I've never seen a ute fan do anything wrong, especially criticize an officiating crew after a loss (even when a 4th and 18 conversion is what truly cost them the game).

    Someday, we'll all become as perfect as u fans and realize the error of our ways.

    The sad thing is that I don't think there's nearly as many UW fans whining in these comments as there are utah fans (or more appropriately- BYU haters).

  • Why is this still a topic?????
    Sept. 9, 2008 3:07 p.m.

    Here's a novel idea. MAKE YOUR PAT and then shut up.

  • Be accountable...
    Sept. 9, 2008 3:04 p.m.

    If UW (and its advocates) put as much effort into executing on simple plays as they have into moaning about a questionable call they might actually start winning some games. I can't believe how much moaning and groaning is going on about this call. It didn't take any points off the board, it didn't push UW so far out they couldn't make the PAT, and BYU still had to make a play 9 times out of 10 can't be done. In spite of this call, the odds were still in UWs favor that they would take the game into overtime. They didn't execute. BYU did. Game over.

    Now get over it!!!

  • Anonymous
    Sept. 9, 2008 2:45 p.m.

    There is a difference between complaining aobout a preceived "bad call" and only complaining when something goes wrong for your team and praising the same situation when it helps your team. I can honestly say I would feel the same about this call no matter which team it helps/hurts (yes if a bad call helped my team I would be relieved but I would still call it what it was). Maybe there are a few, and I am sure it is a very few of you, that would think the same way if it been Hall in that situation, but I am sure we would be hearing a very different story from all of the BYU fans if that's the way it had played out and that is the basis of your hyprocracy and the basis of my statement.

  • Amen
    Sept. 9, 2008 2:37 p.m.

    I agree with "penalized" byu being ranked 15th in the nation should not have only beat Washington by 1 point! There defense could not stop locker! He ran wild! I was glad to see byu drop in the polls they dont deserve to move up

  • re: Anonymous | 1:54 p.m.
    Sept. 9, 2008 2:19 p.m.

    Tell me honestly that you've NEVER complained about an official's call, otherwise, you're just as much a hypocrit as any other fan that you so condemn.

    The call was legit. The calls that weren't legit, were the missed calls.

    There's no hypocrisy in defending a legitimate call, even if it did benefit your team.

    There's no hypocrisy is criticizing a judgement call that you felt was incorrect.

    The only hypocrisy is in criticizing a legitimate call simply because it did not benefit your team.

    In this case, the Washington player clearly threw the ball high into the air (at least 20 to 30 feet, not a toss over the shoulder) which is specifically including in the rules as an example of excessive celebration.

    Bury your head in the sand and pretend that white is black and black is white, but, in the end, the official made the correct call based strictly on the rules.

    There's is NOTHING in the rules that says an official should use "discretion" in making the call based on whether it will affect the outcome of the game.

    The blocked kick, not the call, is what prevented Washington from extending the game into overtime.

  • Re: Anonymous @ 1:54
    Sept. 9, 2008 2:09 p.m.

    I agree with you that had that call been made on BYU, BYU fans would be livid. However, your statement about hypocrisy is also self-condemning. From my recollection of the BYU/Utah game last year, I heard a lot of complaining from Ute fans about the officiating. True, I don't know if you're a Ute fan, but I assume you're a fan of some team and it clearly is not just BYU fans who complain about officiating.

  • Samurai Jack
    Sept. 9, 2008 1:55 p.m.

    Re: Penalized

    Absolutely correct.

    I hope BYU fans see the truth in this statement. BYU's performance should have been stronger for their ranking.

    So should have Ohio St's and they also fell a couple of spots. By comparison, though, the University of Ohio (at home no less) is a much less formidable opponenet than UW (especially in Seattle).

  • Anonymous
    Sept. 9, 2008 1:54 p.m.

    Hey everyone look, for the first time ever BYU fans are applauding an officials call (even though the rest of the football world is condeming it). This of course is only becase it helped them. Can you say hypocrite? I remember all of the posts from the BYU fans crying non-stop about bad calls last year and now they have the nerve to call huskie fans a bunch of cry babies? Again, can you say hypocrite? Not surprising though given who we are talking obout, but it is ironic.

  • re: other foot
    Sept. 9, 2008 1:23 p.m.

    Sorry to disappoint you, but Bronco complaining about biased PAC-10 was simply stating the facts. Game after game after game can be offered as PROOF that the PAC-10 refs are blatantly biased in favor of PAC-10 teams.

    If you watched the game with any objectivity, you saw several blatant Washington holds that happened right in front of the officials. These weren't subtle holds where a ref should use some discretion in calling the hold, these were holds where the BYU defender was literally tackled or pushed from behind right in front of the ref.

    And, NO, you're absolutely wrong, I'm not naive in saying that BYU fans would not have been complaining about the excessive celebration call. We've seen that called way too many times on BYU players in the past. The reaction from BYU fans would have been to criticize the BYU player for making such a stupid mistake and such a critical stage in the game.

  • Jack from Ark
    Sept. 9, 2008 12:37 p.m.

    By the way folks BYU was also penalized for the same infraction on the next play or did everyone miss that. The fact that it really didn't mean much has nothing to do with the call. The Huskeys could have done the on side kick and been successful but it didn't happen. Great BLOCK and great win. Pretty doesn't count in anything but beauty contests.

    Go Cougars

  • penalized
    Sept. 9, 2008 12:28 p.m.

    BYU was penalized for barely beating a weak Washington team...not for getting a "tainted" victory...

    a 15th ranked team in the nation should beat a Washington team by 30...not by 1...and not by 1 when Washington should have tied it up...

  • Gary
    Sept. 9, 2008 12:25 p.m.

    The entire point is being lost on the reall issue. If they had missed the 35 yarder it could be argued that the ref had an impact. Howeer, as we all kow the kick was blocked. Why is that the ref's fault? The point is that their PAT team muffed it. That is where the blame should lie. You have to overcome adversity, bad calls, and bad luck. BYU used it to create a critical stop, and Washington should have blocked better.

  • Holding
    Sept. 9, 2008 12:12 p.m.

    Mr. Willingham, you say that the refs can use discretion in calling holding penalties too. Isn't it interesting that the refs used their "discretion" to not call one holding penalty on UW the whole game? Even when it was incredibly obvious and right in front of the ref who happened to be right in front of the man with the ball on a few occassions, the refs used their "discretion" and decided the holding was not severe enough to warrant a flag. There's even photographic evidence that the refs decided not to call a penalty on the guy who tugged with all his might on Jan Jorgensen's jersey as Jorgensen blocked the PAT at the end of the game. The refs missed a lot of calls, but that doesn't mean that their last call was wrong. Rules are rules.

  • RE: PS
    Sept. 9, 2008 12:00 p.m.

    I did notice the holding. I was at the game and noticed a lot more holding than that doen by the Washington O-line. None of it was called and its likely this holding cought on film would not have been called ether. well in fact it didnt get called. Bad calls or no calls all round at the game.

  • re: PS
    Sept. 9, 2008 11:52 a.m.

    Actually surprised that the refs did not call off-sides on BYU's block of the PAT.

    Totally expected the refs to give them another re-try. In the spirit of OU/Oregon.

  • Samurai Jack
    Sept. 9, 2008 11:45 a.m.

    For all of us that have played the game, it is a sappy stretch to say that a 30 yd field goal requires a lower trajectory than a typical PAT. The only reason that kick would be need to be performed differently is when the kicker is very subpar.

    UW's kicker is not subpar.

    The argument is lame. It is a manufactured story to augment the continuing diatribe against PAC-10 officials after the Oregon/OU debacle.

    Washington lost the game because they couldn't keep the BYU defensive rush out of the backfield.

    That being said, BYU's defense needs to stiffen and improve if a BCS bowl game is to stay within reach.

  • PS
    Sept. 9, 2008 11:46 a.m.

    Did anyone notice in the AP picture that Jan Jorgenson was able to block the kick IN SPITE OF being illegally "held" by #76? If the kick had been good and the proper call made it would have had to been tried again after a penalty against UW.

  • Next game please
    Sept. 9, 2008 11:40 a.m.

    Yawn, This is an old story.

  • Husker fan
    Sept. 9, 2008 11:32 a.m.

    Call or no call, itwas not a "great game" or "magnificent victory" for BYU. BYU barely beat a team that is down and they should have beaten convincingly, hence the drop in the polls. Y fans get off Mark Mays back, have you ever listened to Todd Christensen?

  • Keep your complaining ways
    Sept. 9, 2008 11:22 a.m.

    If BYU lost that game it would have been because they made a lot of mistakes. They can play better. They need to play better.

    But reality is Washington was lucky to be in that game, even when they were playing at their best. Yes, it is hard to accept a loss when you play your best, but get over it.

    BYU has lost close games over the last couple of years, like a game against BC that went into overtime. Were there calls in that game to complain about? Sure. Do I as a BYU fan remember what lost us that game? Yes. BYU didn't play well enough, despite the other teams or the refs.

    That's my BYU perspective. So putting on the Washington shoe, or more likely taking the Ute advice to put myself in the loser's position (Where Utah recently keeps finding itself in in a close game with BYU), I say get over it, losers!

  • Fouls Called
    Sept. 9, 2008 11:22 a.m.

    Sorry if someone already made the comment, but didn't BYU have more than 8 flags thrown (not sure of the exact number) against them in the game, and Washington only had 2... with both happening in the final minute of play. If there was a bias by the refs it was clearly evidenced in the lack of consistent calls throughout the game.

  • PAC-10
    Sept. 9, 2008 11:13 a.m.

    It's about time the Pac-10 got a taste of it's own medicine. BOO-HOO, and why do you Ute fans even care, you now have two cupcake teams to play, USU and then Weber.

  • Wrong Debate-you are WRONG
    Sept. 9, 2008 11:06 a.m.

    When the cameras flashed to the sidelines and Coach Willingham after the TD (before the stupid penalty call), he held up ONE (1) finger and later confirmed that point in the post-game press conference.

    Why do you Ute (or yewt) fans continue to come on here and tear down an otherwise magnificent BYU victory? (We still cheer your victory at the "Big House" vs Michigan!). Mark May I can understand with his Husky heritage, but I am sick of everyone trying to take away from an otherwise great game.

    BYU won! Get over it and quit trying to spin it any other way. Certainly no reason to lie about it on a public forum. Thanks for playing, but go away and get ready for the Aggies.

  • BYU won
    Sept. 9, 2008 11:00 a.m.

    BYU made UW punt 5 times. They sacked Locker 4 times. Had more yards on offense than UW. More time of possession than UW. Scored more points than UW. Got a lot less help from the refs than UW. BYU haters quit yer whining and get a life.

    BYU won.


  • Re: No other foot
    Sept. 9, 2008 10:53 a.m.

    To imply that BYU wouldn't complain about it if the situation was reversed shows how naive you really are. Bronco brought up Pac-10 officiating before the game even started so I am sure that something would be said if the same thing had happened to BYU. Also, to say that the penalty had no affect on the kick is stupid. Of course it did. Give credit to BYU for the block, but the pressure on the kicker increased a ton. Not only did he have to kick a PAT to tie the game, now he has to do it from 15 yards further. It did affect him and how he kicked.

  • powderhound00
    Sept. 9, 2008 10:53 a.m.

    Isnt it fantastic that we all love a sport that is, for the way it is governed, totally subjective. From the way that the rules are enforced, to how we choose the champion, FBS (DIV-1) football has created the most ridiculous, self-imposed problems.
    We say that refs should make calls within the context of the game and that they should use judgment, but when that judgment is incongruent with our own observations, we insist that they must interpret the rules literally. When we see a rule interpreted literally, as in the BYU/UW game, we cry foul, and insist that the referee should have based his call on other factors and used better judgment.

  • Anonymous
    Sept. 9, 2008 10:45 a.m.

    It is funny how vehemently BYU fans are defending this obviously stupid call. Yah, it was technically correct, but most penalties in a game are made by a referee making his best judgement. Any rational fan would have to admit that the ref used poor judgement in making that call which was in now way excessive celebration, no matter what the rule states. If BYU was in Washingtons position their fans would be whining just as much about how they were robbed of a win by a bad call.

  • A way the refs can do it over
    Sept. 9, 2008 10:35 a.m.

    Take a look at the blocked field goal picture.

    Don't care how close or how high the kicker kicks that thing, that thing gets blocked when you let the opposing team surge through and stand in front of the kicker.

    To settle this the refs should stand the kicker 15 yards closer. Put Jan Jorgenson in front of the kick as would be the case, all things equal. And lets see if the outcome is any different.

    Give me a break. Those were your pac 10 refs (who btw, missed lots of calls [holding mainly] that hurt BYU in that game). At least Willingham got the pressure off himself for a while.

  • Stewart
    Sept. 9, 2008 9:55 a.m.

    What would everybody be saying if they hadn't made the call and let it go. Throwing the ball high into the air in front of T.V. cameras and not calling it would have been seen as pure bias. No one call by a ref wins or loses a game, it is all of those that go before and after the call. If a player doesn't know the rules he/she doesn't belong on the field. What if offensive holding had been called that the fans couldn't see? Should the refs have ignored that since it may have changed the out come of the game?

  • Gretzky
    Sept. 9, 2008 9:50 a.m.

    and ALL 100 of the NO-CALLS made by the refs while UW was holding Jurgenson and Dulan ALL game long were NOT judgement calls??? no, the refs were paid not to call those. they had NO choice in the celebration penalty. i called that penalty before the ref did. any real fan would know that rule whether byu or uw broke it. it's the rule. americans don't like to play by rules especially when a non BSC potentially busting team is favored by the rule. this is all sickening to think that a supposed poor UW team (which i don't believe) needs a break to win. byu ran UW into the ground. only Locker showed any kind of promise for UW. give him props no doubt. but BYU blocked the PAT which would have been blocked no matter what.

  • No other foot
    Sept. 9, 2008 9:26 a.m.

    Guaranteed, if the shoe were on the other foot, NOBODY in the national media would be making a big deal about the call, instead, it would've been simply a footnote to the end result.

    BYU wouldn't be criticizing the officials, instead, they would be criticizing their own "player-x" who was stupid enough to spoil a great play by getting called for excessive celebration.

    I've seen BYU players flagged for excessive celebration MANY times, for doing little more than what Locker was flagged for. In almost every case, the kicker simply kicked a slightly longer extra point.

    GET REAL PEOPLE. Adding 15 yards to a kick that was already a chip shot, and from straight on, is NOTHING.

    The ONLY reason that this whole debate is occurring is because BYU made a great play and BLOCKED the kick.

    If the shoe was on the other foot, the BCS establishment (including the locked-in-step media), would simply be breathing a sigh of relieve that another non-BCS "pretender" bit the dust.

  • anon
    Sept. 9, 2008 9:11 a.m.

    If the referees had been doing their job fairly, Washington probably wouldn't have even gotten the touchdown. The long pass that put them into position to score was only completed because of blatant, uncalled holding.

  • The Kick!
    Sept. 9, 2008 9:11 a.m.


  • heart of the game
    Sept. 9, 2008 9:03 a.m.

    Sometimes I believe we get emotional about sports and forget about the "heart of the game", which is valuable lessons sports teach. One of the most important of those is learning how to win and how to lose - with dignity. Having coached young men in various sports, I've often seen parents let their emotions overcome their rational thinking, all in the name of seeing "little Johnny" come out on top. This is when the purpose of sports gets out of perspective. I believe that's what's happened in this case. The refs made a call, which is their responsibility, and which they do throughout the game. Any of those calls can make a difference in the outcome. Those who are thinking with their brains will know that the debate isn't over whether one of many calls was right or wrong, but rather whether that rule is right or..wrong (which I believe to be the case). Otherwise, to think that this one call was the "game loser" is way out of perspective...kinda like little league. Hopefully the Washington players won't follow their coach and believe they were cheated, like little Johnny often does. That's what would be the real shame.

  • Shoe on the Other Foot
    Sept. 9, 2008 9:03 a.m.

    Hey Kuugs. Put the shoe on the other foot and imagine that Max had gotten the call and that BYU would have lost the game.

    Ask yourselves: Under those circumstance, would I feel the same way as I do now?

    Thought so.

  • Willingham?
    Sept. 9, 2008 8:48 a.m.

    Why would anybody give credence to what Tyrone Willingham has to say about the call? It's the desperate comments of a guy on his way out the door. Even the UW fans in Seattle are calling for his head. Of course he's going to say whatever he needs to in favor of his team...he's 0-forever and coaching what could potentially be his last game at UW every week this season! What did you expect him to say..."I loved the call?" Get real.

    Oh, and by the way, it was the correct call and shame on both Jake Locker AND Tyrone Willingham for not knowing it beforehand, especially after getting the NCAA's memo before the season specifying this exact type of infraction!

    Naysayers be darned...

  • Wrong debate
    Sept. 9, 2008 8:36 a.m.

    It's disappointing to hear bronco make a comment that the call did not change the fact that his team blocked the kick. If it was a normal pat, it would have been blocked a ute fan, I'll give you that assumption, but it's a waste of time anyway.

    Why is nobody mentioning the fact that Tyrone willingham had his arm raised signalling that his team would be going for two, not one. So if the call had notoccured, byu would never have had a chance to block the kick.

    The real debate should be whether or not the cougar defense could have stopped locker on the 3 yard line for the 2 of conversion. Judging by the rest of the game, I have no reason to believe locker would have been stopped. But that should be the real debate!

    Reality is that fans nationwide were robbed of a moment that truly would have been dramatic and exciting either way. All debate could have been settled on one play on the field. We as fans were robbed of a moment that could have been a defining moment that bcs teams have (or non-bcs teams fail to have).

  • Buffoonery
    Sept. 9, 2008 8:35 a.m.

    ESPN's Mark May, along with anybody else who thinks Locker just "tossed the ball over his shoulder" are buffoons. Funny how a "toss over the shoulder" can come back down and hit the SAME SHOULDER a full 3 seconds later!

    BYU outplayed Washington the whole game and deserved the win. With the surge BYU's kick defense showed on that blocked PAT they would have likely blocked it no matter the distance.

    You BYU haters can stop talking like one call cost UW a game. Stop pretending like even with a tie that UW would have automatically won in overtime. BYU was the far superior offensive team the entire game. Without Locker UW wouldn't have even been close. Ironic how in the end, without Locker's gaffe, they would have had a chance to have their kick blocked from 15 yards closer!

  • JMT
    Sept. 9, 2008 8:10 a.m.

    Really sad that this is the end result of a great rush that blocked a kick. Clearly the quarterback threw the ball then celebrated with his team. If it is true that the NCAA sent out a video highlighting the plays that they are going to focus on, and this is one of them, shame on any player not knowing that rule.

    Come to think of it, hasn't it always been a rule you can't throw the ball after a touchdown? That has always been unsportsmanlike.

    Watching this game was painful in that we had to listen to the commentators. At one point the commentator complimented BYU and said that when Washington wins, it's not like they beat a cupcake team. This BYU team is pretty good.

    When a non-BCS team wins it is painful for the BCS schools and the ruling elite. Their whole gig is based on the football gods giving them complete control. And the media elite have always loved Willinham even though he has a horrible coaching record. And let's face it, BYU is hated. Put it all together and the most hated team in America beat their poor little Willingham and the BCS. Oh shame!

  • Which Big Call??
    Sept. 9, 2008 8:09 a.m.

    Are we still talking about the incomplete pass Utah made in the closing minutes of their bowl game last year vs. Navy? The one the officials ruled complete but later said was a mistake?? The one that gave them the game???

    Come on...that game has been over for 9 months now!!

  • Say what?
    Sept. 9, 2008 8:03 a.m.

    Every football game has blown calls. This one was no exception, and plenty went against BYU. In the game I was watching, BYU won by blocking a kick - and dominating throughout the game.

  • Cry me a river
    Sept. 9, 2008 8:02 a.m.

    The only people crying more over that game than Husky fans are Ute fans. I've never seen a group of fans so obsessed with their rival. It is really pathetic. Every time BYU wins the Ute fans try and discredit the win. Well BYU has won 23 of their past 25 games. I know it is hard to watch Ute fans but get used to it.

  • Disgusted...with ESPN
    Sept. 9, 2008 7:54 a.m.

    Mark May can take his opinion and shove it. Tossed it over his shoulder? Get a life, buddy. Your purple colors are showing through your skin color.

  • Re: Interesting
    Sept. 9, 2008 7:50 a.m.

    You point out that BYU was penalized by dropping in the polls. That is not really true. This early in the season, the polls are very volatile. You can win big and still drop, just ask Georgia fans after the first week.

    The fact of the matter is this. At this point even bad publicity gets BYU noticed. Now the media will be watching to see what the Cougars do from now on. Everyone is interested in the Cougars.

    Because of this call, all of the hype around Fresno State being better than BYU went out the window. BYU has the chance to capitalize by winning out.

  • Anonymous
    Sept. 9, 2008 7:52 a.m.

    Why don't we just use "Judgement Calls" and "discresion" in the entire game.

    For instance, with Ungas fumble can you imagine Mendenhall saying, "I think we all know that was not the right call ...," "It's an opportunity to use discretion, and it was not used. The proper judgment was not used. That was not an act of a young man trying to fumble the ball. That was not an irresponsible act at all and therefore it should have been viewed in its totality (we had driven the ball 97 yards to this point, more than most teams need to drive to make a touchdown )and not just in the letter of the law."

    And then Unga could say, Hey I didn't know I fumbled the ball before I crossed the line. All I was trying to do was score a touchdown.

  • UteGary
    Sept. 9, 2008 7:48 a.m.

    Officials immediately called a penalty because, as a point of emphasis for officials this year, Locker violated one part of the excessive celebration rule in the NCAA rule book throwing the ball in the air. Why dont the officials make a point of getting right, calling the blatantly missed calls, not calling excessive celebration on a kid who just made a great play. The reason I love college sports is the passion and emotion of the players. Sometimes when I watch pro sports, I feel like I am watching someone at work, just going through process. Excessive celebration has been a problem in the NCAA for decades, but the coaches and ADs dont seem to want to correct it. The ref may have been wrong, but those who control the rules have not stepped up to fix the rule. I agree with what has been previously written by rvalens2 and some others, fix the rule. Coaches and ADs its up to you.

  • Don't move on!
    Sept. 9, 2008 7:38 a.m.

    BYU was getting hometowned by the PAC-10 officials all night. This was one of the few calls they actually managed to get right.

    "Hey officials! Enforce the rules by the book, except when it costs the team we want to win the game, whereupon you must interpret them by the 'spirit of the law,' so that the team we want to win wins!"

    Sorry people, you can't have it both ways.

    But keep weeping and wailing and gnashing your teeth. And, please, don't move on with your lives by any means!

  • New Yorker
    Sept. 9, 2008 7:13 a.m.

    To interesting:
    It got the national attention because it was BYU. That's all!

  • gwbusch
    Sept. 9, 2008 6:52 a.m.

    A rulr is a rule. We don't want refs who show "discresion"--we want refs who enforce the rules evenly.

  • Rules of the Game
    Sept. 9, 2008 6:47 a.m.

    It's too bad that a great final play was overshadowed by a player's mistake. Obviously Locker wasn't taunting, but he threw the ball up in the air, which is against the rules. Penalty!

    Jorgensen and the defense had a great push and blocked the kick. Game over. BYU did what they had to do to win. The refs did not throw the ball. The refs did not rip off UW. The refs didn't block the kick. The refs, the refs, the refs . . .

    Let's get on to UCLA. If BYU wins, which they should, it will be a mute point. BYU just needs to show that they belong where they are, and should keep climbing. Just play the game and win. That is what we hope takes place this Saturday. GO COUGARS!

  • Two-Faced
    Sept. 9, 2008 6:31 a.m.

    I'll bet the whole world wouldn't have taken this debate this far if one of the BYU players had done the same and been flagged for the same penalty. Move on, it's over!

  • The problem
    Sept. 9, 2008 6:16 a.m.

    This is the problem here: Willingham says that the refs make a judgement call on every play, sometimes throwing flags and sometimes not. Well, this time they did throw a flag, making a judgement call, which also seems to follow the new rule. Now I believe celebration rules are silly and need to be changed, but the ref did his job in following the rule. It's not the refs job to judge the intent of the action, but the action itself. I fully believe Locker did not throw the ball to taunt BYU, but out of excitement for making a great play. But, a rule is a rule and kudos to the refs for making the correct call. Now, let's get rid of that rule because it is completely ridiculous.
    Besides, if the BYU quarterback had done the same thing and received a penalty (which led to Washington blocking the game tying 35 yard PAT), then Washington fans would say what BYU fans are saying, and BYU fans would be crying foul - another difference would be that the national media would not care so much either.

  • Rich
    Sept. 9, 2008 5:41 a.m.

    The call did not keep them from tying the game. If the kick had gone wide then maybe one could say that the call came in to play but the kick was BLOCKED!!!! BYU did thier job on the that play (PAT) and Washington didn't.

  • ron
    Sept. 9, 2008 5:35 a.m.

    I know what the reaction would have been by the big time coaches and big time media if the play was reversed with the two teams.(BACK BURNER). Just can't do that to the elitest bcs.. Get a life folks and move on.

  • Cry me a River
    Sept. 9, 2008 4:51 a.m.

    Two years ago the same referee crew called back a game winning touchdown by BYU at Arizona on a phantom penalty, so it's not like this crew wasn't already in deep. Washington was flagged for something specific emphasized in the rules this year. The NCAA sent a video over the summer to every university containing points of emphasis for the upcoming season, including celebration and what actions would draw the automatic penalty. If Jake Locker says he didn't know it was a rule, then shame on coach Willingham for not instructing his team as the NCAA requested in the video.

    No one should ever forget that BYU has blocked two key kicks against PAC10 foes in the last 3 games and that based on the kind of push they got on this PAT they would have blocked it from 2 yards or 35 yards. Washington failed to execute what amounted to a basic 35 yrd FG attempt, simple for any kicker and team, but did not block effectively and were outplayed by the BYU rushers. That is where the game was won or lost. The players DID decide the game on the field on the last play.

  • Interesting
    Sept. 9, 2008 3:21 a.m.

    I think it is absolutely amazing this has received so much national attention. A referee makes a call that is within his discretion to make, within the rules, and he is hanged and flogged. He is darned because he made a call withing the rules - possibly darned if he didn't (suspension?).

    The biggest shock to anyone who follows PAC 10 football is that it was actually a PAC 10 ref that called the infraction? These are the refs that are known for using every ounce of their "subjective judgement" in favor of their conference teams.

    What is unfortunate is the BYU players did nothing wrong in regards to this penalty (except were unable to tackle him before he scored) and they have been penalized - drop in polls and discussion of a "tainted" victory.

    Both teams played their hearts out. I believe the blocked extra point is what saved the victory for BYU not the penalty. Washington should be commended for playing a great game but BYU did win, "fair and square" within the rules. A rule is a rule is a rule!

  • Seattle's Greatest Wine
    Sept. 9, 2008 2:06 a.m.

    Seattle needs anyone, but their teams to blame for a loss. They have been whinning about every ref. since before the 2007 Superbowl. The PAC-10 will not play without their officials, and the officials didn't block the kick.
    It is almost as bad as someone still whinning about Jordan pushing off of Russell. Life isn't fair, live with it.

    Seattle's greatest wine? "The refs. are picking on us."

  • rvalens2
    Sept. 9, 2008 2:06 a.m.

    The rule needs to be rewritten to:

    After a score, a flag should only be thrown when a player's actions are designed to intimidate, ridicule or taunt an opposing team's players.


    Dancing, throat slashing, pointing at an opposing team's player, jumping into the stands, throwing the ball into the stands and verbal taunting.

    I am glad BYU won but Locker's celebration should not have cost Washington the chance they had to tie or win the game.

  • True Cougar Fan
    Sept. 9, 2008 1:27 a.m.

    Memo to BYU:

    If you let it, this DISTRACTION can prove costly on Saturday against UCLA. Focus on the task at hand by thoroughly preparing and strategizing for UCLA. If anything, this DISTRACTION should motivate you to show the nation what you are capable of on Saturday against UCLA.

    Very truly yours,

    True Cougar Fan