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lamberts-lost-tooth
07-23-2008, 12:53 PM
Rating refs touchy subject for NFL coaches
By Mike Sando
ESPN.com
Updated: July 11, 2008

Officiating can be an emotional subject for NFL head coaches. Pivotal calls that hurt their teams can remain fresh in their memories for years. In extreme cases, a botched call can contribute to a coaching staff's demise.

One prominent head coach offered a terse response when ESPN.com asked him to name the two best referees in the game.

"None of them," the coach huffed.

The response wasn't particularly surprising, but it wasn't the norm, either. Twenty-two of the 32 NFL head coaches named names when asked the question during a wide-ranging ESPN.com survey. Fifteen head coaches named at least one official when asked to single out the worst referees in the game. (Coaches were given anonymity for their candor.) The results were as mixed as the coaches' experiences with various officials presiding over their games.

Mike Carey and Ed Hochuli, two of the most familiar referees, commanded the most positive votes, with eight apiece. None of the other 15 regular referees who worked games in 2007 commanded more than three votes of support from coaches.

Hochuli, an Arizona trial attorney with comic-book musculature and post-call explanations precise enough to hold up in court, has worked two Super Bowls since becoming a referee in 1992. Carey, a former college running back whose company manufactures snow-skiing accessories, is one of two African-American referees and the first to work a Super Bowl.

"The guys that I think are really good, and I must say that most of our guys are really good, they don't impose themselves on the game," said Buffalo Bills coach Dick Jauron, who declined to name referees for the survey. "You don't necessarily notice them. The game is under control. And when there are any issues, they get to you quickly and they explain them, and they explain them in a way that you understand."

The league in recent years has asked officials to explain their rulings more thoroughly, for the benefit of coaches and fans. The idea is to eliminate confusion while instilling confidence in the referee, his crew and the process. Beyond seeking officials who get calls right, league officiating director Mike Pereira also looks for referees with strong leadership skills and the ability to project confidence.

"How does he go about preparing the crew?" Pereira said. "Does he focus on the negative or does he focus more on the positive? Those aspects are extremely important to me.

"And then the one that I also can't deny is, what does he project? How does he project himself when the camera is on and when the microphone is on? I do believe that if people have confidence in the referee, then they have confidence in the whole crew."

Coaches' confidence in Hochuli and Carey went only so far. Despite their 16 combined positive votes, both also generated more negative responses than every official but one. Gerald Austin, who is headed for retirement after 26 years as an NFL official and 18 as a referee, finished with a league-high six negative votes. No head coach listed him among the best referees.

Austin's crews assessed a league-low 8.9 penalties per game last season. Austin also averaged twice as many replay reversals per game as the other referees. Coaches won 11 of 14 challenges against Austin last season, easily the highest reversal rate among referees (the league average was less than 37 percent).

But that doesn't necessarily mean Austin graded out poorly overall. The league assigned him to work the San Diego Chargers' divisional playoff game at Indianapolis. Austin worked two Super Bowls in past seasons. He is also a past winner of the Art McNally Award for sportsmanship.

Austin was one of 10 referees assigned to work playoff games last season. Scott Green, Walt Coleman, Hochuli and Walt Anderson worked wild-card weekend. Carey, Jerome Boger and Peter Morelli joined Austin during the divisional round. Terry McAulay and Jeff Triplette worked the championship games before Carey drew Super Bowl XLII.



ESPN.com asked NFL head coaches whom they thought were the best and worst referees. Coaches were granted anonymity for their candor. Of the referees who received votes, Mike Carey and Ed Hochuli received the most positive votes, and Gerald Austin received the most negative responses.

Voting breakdown
Referee.......Best Votes.....Worst Votes.....Differential
Mike Carey...........8.......................3......... .............5
Ed Hochuli...........8........................4...... ...............4
Tony Corrente.....3........................0........... ..........3
Bill Carollo...........3........................0...... ...............3
Walt Coleman.....2........................0............ .........2
Bill Leavy..............2........................1..... ................1
John Parry............1........................0....... ..............1
Larry Nemmers...2........................2.............. .......0
Jeff Triplette..........0........................3..... ...............-3
Gerald Austin.......0........................6........... .........-6

"To me, the guys that are consistent, call everything the same way every time, and the guys that will explain to you what happened, that is what I like," said Colts coach Tony Dungy, who did not name the referees he considered the worst. "And most of our guys are that way."

Four coaches ranked Hochuli among the worst referees. Three ranked Carey among the worst. Triplette (three), Larry Nemmers (two) and Bill Leavy (one) also drew negative votes.

Three head coaches listed Tony Corrente and Bill Carollo among the best referees. Leavy, Nemmers and Walt Coleman each drew two positive votes. John Parry, a first-year referee in 2007, received the other positive vote.

Subtracting negative votes from positive votes left Carey at plus-five, followed by Hochuli at plus-four, Corrente and Carollo at plus-three, Coleman at plus-two and Leavy and Parry at plus-one. Nemmers was even. At the other end, Austin was minus-six and Triplette was minus-three.

Austin and Nemmers are retiring, Pereira said. Officials Carl Cheffers and Al Riveron were promoted to replace them.

Seven referees finished with zero votes of any kind: Anderson, Boger, Green, McAulay, Morelli, Gene Steratore and Ron Winter.

The NFL values coaches' input in evaluating officials, Pereira said.

The league's annual officiating meetings this month will include a panel featuring Dallas Cowboys coach Wade Phillips, former Pittsburgh Steelers coach Bill Cowher, a current player and a current official. The discussion will focus on what coaches and players value in an official, what information they want to hear from an official and what frustrates them about officiating.

Denver Broncos coach Mike Shanahan said he values officials who hold up well under pressure.

"The main thing is how he operates and how he functions during a game," Shanahan said. "Some guys communicate very well to the coach; other guys communicate very well to the players. The bottom line is, does a guy do a good job? Does he call a good game? And that is the key -- not how he communicates with a coach or with a player. Does he make the right calls?"
http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/columns/story?columnist=sando_mike&id=3447256

tony hipchest
07-23-2008, 01:07 PM
Phil Luckett aka Lil' Phuckit- worst ref ever.

not like this is news to steelerfans (or any other teams fans, for that matter). he was almost worse than donnahey (?) the nba gambling ref.

redst3
07-23-2008, 01:39 PM
Who was the nitwit that screwed up that call in the AFC Championship game where they ruled Troy didnt make the interception?

lamberts-lost-tooth
07-23-2008, 01:49 PM
Who was the nitwit that screwed up that call in the AFC Championship game where they ruled Troy didnt make the interception?

Pete Morelli ....yea, he sucked REAL bad.

lamberts-lost-tooth
07-23-2008, 01:50 PM
Phil Luckett aka Lil' Phuckit- worst ref ever.

not like this is news to steelerfans (or any other teams fans, for that matter). he was almost worse than donnahey (?) the nba gambling ref.

He was involved in like three controversial calls that year that he gave the Lions a "W".

St33lersguy
07-23-2008, 02:21 PM
Who was the nitwit that screwed up that call in the AFC Championship game where they ruled Troy didnt make the interception?

That was the AFC Divisional playoff game

St33lersguy
07-23-2008, 02:24 PM
Anyone know the idiot who called roughing the kicker on Dewayne Washington when Joe Nedney intentionally fell after Dewayne barely bumped into him in the 02 Divisional playoffs against the Titans?

redst3
07-23-2008, 03:18 PM
Thats it! Morelli

The year they got the coin flip wrong in 1998 I think was the same year blocking dummy Luckett ran into a Saints defensive back and cost them a game.

lamberts-lost-tooth
07-26-2008, 03:49 PM
Phil Luckett aka Lil' Phuckit- worst ref ever.

not like this is news to steelerfans (or any other teams fans, for that matter). he was almost worse than donnahey (?) the nba gambling ref.

Lets not forget that Luckett was also involved in the Vinny Testerverde Touchdown call that wasnt even close....Yea....he sucked

tony hipchest
07-26-2008, 04:11 PM
Lets not forget that Luckett was also involved in the Vinny Testerverde Touchdown call that wasnt even close....Yea....he suckedremember when he tackled (got in the way of) that player deep in the backfield. i believe it was the saints joe horn on a bomb? horn went off.

lamberts-lost-tooth
07-26-2008, 04:16 PM
remember when he tackled (got in the way of) that player deep in the backfield. i believe it was the saints joe horn on a bomb? horn went off.

...hehehe...also one of the refs involved in the "Music City Miracle" , much debated pass.

Controversy surrounded this butt-nuggett!!

HometownGal
07-26-2008, 09:33 PM
Hochuli and Carey are most definitely the two best refs in the NFL today - by a long shot. Johnny Grier, though now retired, was also a very competent and consistent ref imho. :thumbsup:

I thought one of the worst refs ever was Gordon McCarter (God rest his soul). He was the ref who upheld the too many men on the field call by the line judge in the 1995 game between the Steelers and Vikes which cost the Steelers 3 points. The highlight of that game (which the Steelers lost 44-24) was Cowher stuffing a photo of the play into McCarter's shirt as he was walking off the field at the half. :laughing::rofl: If you will recall, though the league acknowledged the fubar by the officiating crew, Cowher was fined $7,500 and both officials were fined, as well.

lamberts-lost-tooth
07-27-2008, 08:11 AM
Hochuli and Carey are most definitely the two best refs in the NFL today - by a long shot. Johnny Grier, though now retired, was also a very competent and consistent ref imho. :thumbsup:

I thought one of the worst refs ever was Gordon McCarter (God rest his soul). He was the ref who upheld the too many men on the field call by the line judge in the 1995 game between the Steelers and Vikes which cost the Steelers 3 points. The highlight of that game (which the Steelers lost 44-24) was Cowher stuffing a photo of the play into McCarter's shirt as he was walking off the field at the half. :laughing::rofl: If you will recall, though the league acknowledged the fubar by the officiating crew, Cowher was fined $7,500 and both officials were fined, as well.

One of my favorite memories of Cowher!!!!:tt::tt:

fansince'76
07-27-2008, 08:32 AM
Speaking of refs, does anybody know whatever happened to Darren Pointer? I remember he was a ref a few years back and watching a game he was working on TV - John Madden kept mentioning him and the fact that he was a younger brother or cousin of the Pointer Sisters. He kinda disappeared not too long after that. Google doesn't turn up anything on him either. :noidea:

Hammer Of The GODS
07-27-2008, 10:52 PM
Hands down, Ben Dreith best Ref ever....... because of this call....

eslz06J9hFw&feature=related

Preacher
07-28-2008, 12:58 AM
Hands down, Ben Dreith best Ref ever....... because of this call....

eslz06J9hFw&feature=related

I remember that.

Hilarious... "giving him the business"

silver & black
07-28-2008, 08:34 PM
Walt Coleman... :shake01:

HometownGal
07-28-2008, 09:55 PM
Speaking of refs, does anybody know whatever happened to Darren Pointer? I remember he was a ref a few years back and watching a game he was working on TV - John Madden kept mentioning him and the fact that he was a younger brother or cousin of the Pointer Sisters. He kinda disappeared not too long after that. Google doesn't turn up anything on him either. :noidea:

I found a reference to Aaron Pointer, who is the brother of the Pointer Sisters and a former NFL ref.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aaron_Pointer_(baseball)

SteelersGirlTN7
08-11-2008, 08:17 PM
Anyone know the idiot who called roughing the kicker on Dewayne Washington when Joe Nedney intentionally fell after Dewayne barely bumped into him in the 02 Divisional playoffs against the Titans?


http://www.steelers.com/article/90126/

On the next attempt, Nedney was wide right on the attempt, but as the ball was settling into the net behind the goal post, cornerback Dewayne Washington brushed by Nedney, who promptly flopped to the ground. Referee Ron Blum threw the flag for running into the kicker, and with this second chance Nedney made the 26-yard field goal that ended the Steelers’ season, 34-31.


Uggghh, living in Nashville then, and still, this is a nasty memory for me .. LOL.

btw, long time no see everyone! :-) So happy that football is back!!

stlrtruck
08-12-2008, 09:57 AM
http://www.steelers.com/article/90126/

On the next attempt, Nedney was wide right on the attempt, but as the ball was settling into the net behind the goal post, cornerback Dewayne Washington brushed by Nedney, who promptly flopped to the ground. Referee Ron Blum threw the flag for running into the kicker, and with this second chance Nedney made the 26-yard field goal that ended the Steelers’ season, 34-31.


Uggghh, living in Nashville then, and still, this is a nasty memory for me .. LOL.

btw, long time no see everyone! :-) So happy that football is back!!

While I hated that call, everyone knows that the moment the kicker even feels the wind brush against him he suppose to take a dive and try to get the call. And while he was barely touched, he was touched. Just like the Super Bowl offensive pass interference in the end zone, it was a ticky tack foul but it was still a foul.

RoethlisBURGHer
08-12-2008, 01:32 PM
The blown Heads-Tails call against Detroit on Thanksgiving still pisses me off.

How the hell do you blow the fricken COIN FLIP?

St33lersguy
08-20-2008, 05:17 PM
Hands down, Ben Dreith best Ref ever....... because of this call....

eslz06J9hFw&feature=related

I remember the first time I heard about that I just started laughing. That was hilarious.