Blog Entry

End of Pinstripe Bowl a disgrace to the sport

Posted on: December 30, 2010 8:16 pm
Edited on: December 30, 2010 8:19 pm
Posted by Tom Fornelli

Ask any defender of the bowl system why college football shouldn't ditch bowl games for a playoff and one of their reasons will be that the bowl games are a reward for the players who work so hard during the season.  They're right, too.  The bowl games are a reward for the players.  A vacation to enjoy themselves and have some fun before the year comes to an end.

Just as long as they don't have any of that fun on the field, apparently.

What was a very entertaining first edition of the Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium was marred on Thursday evening when an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty was called on Kansas State wide receiver Adrian Hilburn for what was deemed a celebration after scoring a touchdown in the final minutes.  That celebration was a military-style salute to the crowd after scoring the touchdown that brought his team to within two points and gave Kansas State a chance to tie the game with a two-point conversion.

Instead the Wildcats were backed up 15 yards and forced to go for two from the 18-yard line.  An incomplete pass later, and Syracuse left the Bronx with a 36-34 win.

It was a terrible call, and at possibly the worst time it could have been made.  Kansas State fans, and college football fans have every right to be angry with the official who made the call, and reportedly told Hilburn "wrong choice, buddy" as he threw the flag.  Still, we can all be as angry with the official as we want to be, but I worry that we might be shooting the messenger here.

Yes, it was a terrible call, but the penalty wasn't what's truly terrible about all of this.  The fact that a player celebrating a touchdown is illegal in the first place is what's truly terrible.

These are kids out there on the playing field, are they not?  Maybe the NCAA and the schools forget that from time to time because they're so busy counting the money that these kids make for them.  It's because of this stupid rule that a kid goes from the elation he was feeling for possibly saving the day for his teammates to wanting to crawl under a rock knowing that he just cost those teammates the game.

Is this the lesson that the NCAA is trying to teach its student-athletes?  

I mean, I know that college football is big business.  Hell, listen to any coach leading up to a bowl game and he'll tell you that his team is taking the approach that the bowl game is a "business trip."  It's just I fear we've reached the point where we've forgotten that football is a game, and that college football is a game being played by college kids.  For our entertainment.

If the NCAA wants its student-athletes to start behaving like professionals, then maybe the NCAA should start paying them like they're professionals.

Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 22, 2011 1:29 pm

End of Pinstripe Bowl a disgrace to the sport

This particular Russell doens't become kicked in the clearly show equally quickly...obviously maintains a new point out entertianing

Since: Sep 21, 2010
Posted on: January 2, 2011 8:08 pm

End of Pinstripe Bowl a disgrace to the sport

@thedukeintexas: Very well said. I hope you're info regarding the fate that awaits these lame officials is correct, and I hope it doesn't end there.  That official should be banned from ever officiating at any level that would compensate him. As for the rest of that crew, they should be suspended for at least a year so they can reflect on what they did to change the game (for the worse).

In addition, the only taunting that happened at the end of this play is on the official that chastized Hilburn telling him "bad decision, buddy." He should be fined no different than Sal Alosi was for sticking out that knee. Afterall, that comment is the equivalent of kneeing Hilburn in the balls for saluting his fans.

Since: Nov 21, 2006
Posted on: January 2, 2011 3:59 pm

End of Pinstripe Bowl a disgrace to the sport

"BAD DECISION, BUDDY" on the worst call ever made in football. The 2 referees who made the horrible bad call on Kansas State for excessive celebration (on Adrian Hilburn at the end of the Pinstripe Bowl) should be and, it is my understanding, will be punished by being "black-balled" from ever doing another Big 12 game AND the crew has been put at the bottom of sever Big 10 coaches Officials List where they prioritize who they want to officate their games. I expect this crew will be sitting on a few Saturdays next season. What these officials did was criminal. It cost the Kansas State team an opportunity to ties the game, it cost the fans a great finish, and it tainted the SYracuse win for their players and fans. When officials take over a game and determine the results they have overstepped their authority. They should be suspended by the Big 10. The game didn't cost me any money, but there were many who did possibly lose money in Vegas by this one unfair call. There is just too much riding on quality officiating to put up with these lame referees with their personal axes to grind.

Since: Dec 30, 2010
Posted on: January 1, 2011 10:10 pm

End of Pinstripe Bowl a disgrace to the sport

Being a gigantic Syracuse fan im a absolutley thrilled about winning our first bowl game since 01, it was by far the most entertaining bowl game this bowl season thus far. I do agree that the flag that was thrown, though might have been by rules the right call, should not have been thrown. The penalty not only took away from what was an absolutley terrific game by both teams, but took away a great play made by Adrian Hilburn, he was not showboating or taunting anyone, he was simply excited about the play, which is understandable. I also don't believe that penalty lost K-State the game either, it was back and forth all game long and the forst team to make a defense stop was gonna win, plain and simple. K-State should not have faked the FG during the second to last possession, and who was to say State would have converted the two point conversion anyway. It was a great game for both teams, unfortunatley one team had to go home dissapointed, but both teams have to be proud of how they played. In no way was the end of the game a disgrace, I've seen worse (2002 National Championship Game) Great Season CUSE!!! cant wait till next season 

Since: Sep 21, 2010
Posted on: January 1, 2011 1:30 pm

End of Pinstripe Bowl a disgrace to the sport

"Sorry, but not only was it a good call but it was the right one."

I'm guessing you're either related to this SOB official, dating his daughter, or made a lot of money on the game. Which is it?  NEVER MIND. NOBODY WANTS TO HEAR YOUR SORRY ARSE REASON.

Since: May 13, 2008
Posted on: January 1, 2011 11:16 am

End of Pinstripe Bowl a disgrace to the sport

I think maybe they should investigate this referee to see if had some money on this game.

Since: Dec 31, 2010
Posted on: December 31, 2010 7:59 pm

End of Pinstripe Bowl a disgrace to the sport

I agree with you except for this being a GREAT game.....GREAT FB involves defense of which there was almost none in the entire game.

Since: Dec 31, 2010
Posted on: December 31, 2010 7:56 pm

End of Pinstripe Bowl a disgrace to the sport

This was a bad call but not sure it was any worse than the NC/Tenn game....both games done by Big 10 officials....Maybe the Big 12 officials will finally have someone worse than they are.  Bottom line for KSU is..... that if KSU could have made the Syracuse Punter participate in the game none of this would have mattered.  2 mediocre offensive FB teams and not one Defensive play all 2nd half by either team.  

Since: Dec 31, 2010
Posted on: December 31, 2010 4:25 pm

End of Pinstripe Bowl a disgrace to the sport

I went for the Orange Men, I do have to admit though, that late call screwed Kansas. I hate the calls which penalize a team for exuberance. That call was extremely egregious and at a critical point in the game, it was totally unnecessary. It takes a lot away from the Syracuse win. I know the bad vs. good calls often balance, but that one was crazy. All it did was make the official’s presence on the field known. I can go along with mistakes because the rules are so often subjective. But that type of crap call stinks. That is why I don’t get too carried away with sports anymore, everything is so contingent on official's mistakes. With this type of overview by the NCAA you never know for certain if officials are on the take or have a covert bet going in Vegas.

Since: Dec 31, 2010
Posted on: December 31, 2010 1:30 pm

End of Pinstripe Bowl a disgrace to the sport

you must be the ref who made the call - not a SINGLE person has agreed with you. If they do, then where is the outrage for all the same calls not being made like the Tenn / NC game??

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