Time Has Come for Officials to Be Held Accountable Just Like Athletes

It's time the fans get an explanation.
It's time the fans get an explanation.Eric Francis/Getty Images
C. J. KrasykCorrespondent IJanuary 29, 2012

In almost any business, if an employee screws up, the employer has to answer for it. So why is it different in sports?

I am not talking about coaches. Athletic directors and presidents answer about them. I am referring to referees. Anytime they miss a call or screw up, it is now all over national television. This is something that has been eating at me for a long time.

The blown goal-tending call in the West Virginia-Syracuse game has just sent me over the edge.

It is high time that officials have to answer for mistakes instead of hiding behind the conference or league statements. No league or conference is going to throw an official under the bus, and that is not what I want either.

I want accountability. I want people to have to answer for mistakes that where made.

Coaches have to stand in front of the media and answer question on plays that were messed up every night. Atlanta Falcons coach Mike Smith took the blame when his Falcons lost to the New Orleans Saints back in November.

Reporters even asked an 18-year-old, Chris Weber, to answer questions when, in a National Championship, he called a timeout even though his team did not have any. He sat up on that stage and answered every question that was asked.

Only one time has an official actually admitted to a mistake in a public forum.

Ed Hochuli missed a call in a Broncos-Chargers game when he ruled that a Jay Cutler fumble was a incomplete pass. Replay showed without a doubt that it was a fumble. The ruling allowed Denver to keep possession of the ball. They went on to score and convert on a two-point play and win the game, 39-38.

Hochuli admitted to missing the call and even answered emails that were sent to him. He manned up and owned his mistake.

It is time for the other officials to do the same thing. It is time for league and conference offices to stop with the no comment or vague memos that do not take any responsibility. They need to start holding their officials to the same standards as the players, coaches and administrations are asked to have.

It is time for accountability. It is time for answers.

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