Mike Leach wants officials to be a part of post-game press conferences. Does he have a point?
Published: Wednesday, 10 September 2014 08:41
by Doug Samuels
USC and athletic director Pat Haden made national headlines over the weekend for a reaction to an on the field call that everyone has now seen play out. When asked about the Haden situation yesterday, Mike Leach shared an interesting suggestion to make sure that in-game officials are held responsible for their calls during a game.
“Rather than coaches and athletic directors being asked about officiating, I think what needs to happen is, after the game, at the press conference, there has to be a representative from the officials answering those questions." Leach told Sirius XM College Sports Nation yesterday.
“Right now, the officials aren’t accountable for any of that stuff. They’ll make some screwy call right, wrong or indifferent, and there’s a coach sitting there...and everybody’s asking him. It’s a total ambush waiting to happen, because we’re not allowed to comment on it. If you do, you get fined."
“It directly affects the success or failure of your team, whether it’s a good call or a bad call. All of a sudden, you’re sitting there, and those questions should be directed to the referee, rather than you or the athletic director. What I think should happen is that when you have a press conference, as they come off the field, the referee should have to answer any quick questions the media have on the calls they made and why this was made and how this was made, so coaches and athletic directors aren’t left with that. So at least there will be an explanation you see. I think that needs to happen. I think that’s long overdue.”
Like many of Leach's rants, he has a great point here. Having officials answer a few quick questions after the game makes a lot more sense than asking coaches, who aren't allowed to answer honestly for fear of criticizing the officials and being fined.
However, the chances of it actually happening are slim.