Let’s talk about something that got a lot of attention on Monday.
The Mountain West has suspended an official for his actions during the Nevada-Air Force game... pic.twitter.com/YXLyi5I5Gg— B.J. Rains (@BJRains) October 1, 2018
The release came in the afternoon and it circulated social media circles for most of the rest of the day. ESPN and Yahoo got stories up later with more details.
He was said to put his hands on the neck area of the student manager, who was a ball boy during the game. I wasn’t watch the game live on Saturday. I haven’t seen a replay and am not aware if one is circulating the internet. I would trust the MWC personnel who reviewed and looked into the situation in that case. Assuming it’s true, it’s NEVER OKAY to do something like that.
Let me backtrack a bit by saying officials have one of the hardest jobs there is. As my dad has said, it’s a job where you have to be perfect from day 1 and are expected to improve from there on out. Their entire jobs are scrutinized by people like us, the majority of who couldn’t come close to doing the job they do. They get calls right much more often than they get them wrong. This post is not mean to be a critique on officials. Nor is it meant to be a critique on this official.
He was wrong, he is being penalized for it. It was dealt with swiftly and correctly. And that’s why I chose to write a bit about it today.
It’s very refreshing that the Mountain West acted how they did. To illustrate my point, when was the last time we saw an institution disciplining someone over an incident before the media or the public even knew about the incident? (I know I’m opening myself up to be wrong here, but can’t remember anything). Normally, nothing is done, a minor discipline is given, or they succumb to public pressure.
Accountability is a word constantly thrown around as much as a football in Rolo’s passing attack, but is rarely followed through on when real issues take place. In addition to this, the transparency in this specific situation was also something that isn’t often seen. Officials are often protected from public reprimand. MLB umpires get taken off of rotation, but with so much movement of crews series after series, it’s hard to track. This was a great example of releasing a public statement to communicate exactly what is being done. In a sport full of “it was handled internally”, we get a clear message communicated about what is exactly being done. Again, refreshing is the word that comes to mind.
Unfortunately, doing the right thing at the right time for the right reasons is not the norm in today’s college football world.