Then I got to thinking...what kind of slippery slope is the SEC headed down? If they start suspending crews every time they make ridiculous calls, they may be out of zebras by mid-November.
I'm only half-kidding.
Consider this hypothetical...Would you agree that there is at least a 50% chance that some boneheaded official (let's call him Wynn Pagers) makes a typical stupid call this week in the Alabama-Tennessee game that affects the game? OK, let's say that next week, Wynn is assigned the Cocktail Party, and he calls unsportsmanlike conduct on Caleb King for daring to cross the goal line against the Gator defense. Will not all of us Dawg fans be all over the interwebs and call-in shows calling for...nay, DEMANDING that Mr. Pagers and the rest of his crew face similar disciplinary action? I know I would...in fact, I may take the week off work solely for that purpose.
You see, now that Commish Slive has made a public effort to hold his officials accountable, it is now HIS office that will be held accountable. If he thinks that making this one move will quell the increasing public outcry regarding the repetitive incompetence of his officials, well...that's a sweet notion, but I don't see it happening.
By the way, I thought this particular quote from Slive was just a real side-splitter:
"A series of calls that have occurred during the last several weeks have not been to the standard that we expect from our officiating crews...I believe our officiating program is the best in the country."So, from that I gather that the commish is busy doing other things on Saturday rather than watch the football being played in his conference, because...that is just RICH. Those calls were EXACTLY the standard that I expect from SEC crews, so I don't really know what he's talking about.
Anyway...what I hope happens is something similar to what I outlined above (except for the penalty against the Dawgs, of course). I hope there is an outpouring of criticism and demands for suspensions every week, and the storm gets so intense that the conference is FORCED to do something about their embarrassing tradition of inept officiating. Make the refs full-time, hold them more publicly accountable, just do SOMETHING.
And, while you're at it, petition the NCAA to stop making rules up that are impossible to enforce, like "excessive celebration". Leave it to the NCAA to outlaw happiness.