Let’s Just Get it Right
Published: Saturday, January 28, 2012
Updated: Monday, November 5, 2012 20:11
Do you think the use of instant replay should be expanded in college basketball?
If you've watched ESPN at all since Saturday you've now probably seen the West Virginia-Syracuse game that ended in a controversial (missed) goaltending call.
West Virginia forward Deniz Kilicli went up for a put back with under 30 seconds to play in an attempt to tie the game. As he laid it off the glass Syracuse forward Baye Moussa Keita blocked it – but only after the ball had already hit the glass, a clear goaltending violation.
The referees didn't see it, but thanks to this innovative but not-yet-fully-embraced technology that we call instant replay, everyone else sure did.
This is just another instance of officials being handcuffed by instant replay rules. The referees couldn't go to the monitor and review the replay from any of the dozen or so camera angles that the Carrier Dome has to offer because it's not a reviewable play.
If I can lie in bed hundreds of miles from the venue and watch the replay over and over again, then why can't the officials, who are supposed to be in control of the game, do so?
It's not just basketball either.
Remember that whole Armando Gallaraga perfect game that was all for naught because first base umpire Jim Joyce missed what was supposed to be the final out?
Joyce subsequently gave a tearful apology that he missed it, but he wouldn't have had to if he were allowed to take a second look.
Following that incident, there were countless discussions about whether or not instant replay should be expanded, and I'm going to be honest, I have absolutely no clue why it shouldn't be.
Why would you not want to get it right?
The arguments against it are that it would disrupt the flow of the game.
Really? Have any of the people making that case watched a sporting event recently?
I'm pretty sure the two and a half hours of commercials already do that.
Even the NFL, where coaches are allowed two challenges, is a flawed system. If the referee botches a call right in front of your sideline, but you have no timeouts then there's nothing you can do.
Officials making the right call shouldn't come down to coaching strategy. It should be just how things are done, not a benefit of the coach who still has a timeout in his back pocket.
It all goes back to the same question: Why can't we get the calls right?
If you have the opportunity to go back, and rectify your mistake, why wouldn't you?
Leagues need to embrace the advantages they now have. Almost all professional and collegiate games have a number of cameras available.
In the year 2012 there is absolutely no excuse for having a game decided because of an officials' mistake that could have easily been changed if he were allowed to go to a TV screen courtside.
It's never a good sign when the people on couches can watch a replay 16 times, but the guys who need to see it can't.