Posted by Tom Fornelli
UPDATE: The Pac-12 announced an official reprimand, and $10,000 fine for Lane Kiffin in response to his comments.
“The Pac-12 has specific rules that prohibit our coaches from making public comments about officiating, and this prohibition specifically includes comments that create doubts about the credibility of the Conference’s officiating program,” stated Scott. “The Conference expects each Pac-12 coach to adhere to our standards of conduct and to conduct himself or herself in a manner which will reflect credit on the institution and the Conference.”
USC's 56-48 loss in triple-overtime against Stanford on Saturday night might just be the best loss in the school's recent history. The sense I've gotten from USC fans since is that even though the Trojans lost, they're incredibly happy with the way the team played and more optimistic about the program than they have been in years.
Lane Kiffin, on the other hand, isn't nearly as pleased about the game. While I'm sure he's proud of his team for being the first squad to even take a lead against Stanford this season, let alone force overtime, he's still a bit perturbed with the officiating on Saturday night. In fact, on Sunday Kiffin said that he had already contacted Pac-12 Conference officials and called one unidentified person from the locker room after the game and told him that he had been "lied to" by the officials.
According to Kiffin, side judge Brad Glenn told him that USC would be granted a timeout if replays showed that Robert Woods' knee had come down with a second remaining on the clock, giving USC a chance to kick a 50-yard field goal. Instead referee Michael Batian announced that time had expired after looking at replays.
“The ruling on the field was that we were going to overtime,” Batlan said after the game. “Any coach can ask for a timeout, but he doesn’t get one until an official grants or signifies it. I was not a part of any conversation or meeting with regards to a requested timeout.”
Personally, if I were Kiffin and I had a timeout left, I'd be more upset with Woods for not just going down with plenty of time left to call that timeout instead of making a mad dash for the sideline.
Of course, that wasn't Kiffin's only beef with the officiating on Saturday night. He also brought up a call in the second overtime. Facing a second-and-5 there was a holding call against Stanford that took place at the line of scrimmage. Though for some reason the officials marked the 10 yards off from where Tyler Gaffney's 8-yard run ended rather than from where the penalty took place. So instead of having a second-and-15 at the 30-yard line, Stanford had a second-and-7 at the 22.
The Cardinal scored three plays later to tie the game up and force the third, decisive overtime.
That call I didn't understand either.