Pac-12 to Change Replay Protocol After Report of Overturned Targeting Call

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistOctober 11, 2018

ADVANCE FOR SATURDAY, OCT. 1 - In this Oct. 10, 2015, file photo,  a PAC-12 logo is seen painted on the field before an NCAA college football game between Washington State and Oregon in Eugene, Ore. Larry Scott helped transform and modernize the Pac-12 when he took over as commissioner, helped the conference land a $3 billion TV deal and create its own network. Eight years later, the conference is reaping financial rewards and he believes it is well-positioned to adapt to the changing landscape of both college sports and media rights. (AP Photo/Ryan Kang, File)
Ryan Kang/Associated Press

The Pac-12 has announced a change in replay protocol following a report that a conference administrator overturned a targeting call during a USC-Washington State game on Sept. 21.

Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott discussed the situation while speaking to reporters on Thursday, via College Football Talk's Bryan Fischer:

"Our conference and our leadership has a deep commitment to the integrity of officiating and to protecting student-athlete health and well being. What's been reported was of significant concern to me. It's new information to me that I was not aware of. There's some things that have come out that I've had a chance to look into and have had discussions with the individuals involved directly.

"First, I've come to the conclusion that we've made mistakes with regards to our procedures involved with replay review in the command center. We mixed administrative oversight and leadership with real-time replay review calls made by experts—on the field, in the stadium and in the command center. Moreover, we've allowed for ambiguity about who has the final call."

During the last play of the third quarter, Washington State linebacker Logan Tago dove head first and made helmet-to-helmet contact with USC quarterback JT Daniels after he knelt and was ruled down. 

Per Yahoo Sports' Pete Thamel, an internal replay report from the game showed in-stadium replay officials and the replay officials ruled Tago's play as a targeting penalty that would have resulted in his ejection. 

However, Thamel reported Woodie Dixon, Pac-12 general counsel and senior vice president of business affairs, was the third party who overruled the officials. Tago wasn't called for targeting and remained in the game. 

As part of the replay protocol changes, administrators, like Dixon, will be removed from the replay review process altogether. 

The new procedure will begin with this weekend's games, starting on Friday when Arizona takes on Utah at Rice–Eccles Stadium. 

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