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Mike Pereira analyzes the key calls

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Mike Pereira

Mike Pereira was the NFL's Vice President of Officiating from 2004-09, having spent the five seasons previous to that as the league's Director of Officiating. He also served as an NFL game official when he acted as a side judge for two seasons (1997-98). Follow him on Twitter.

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IT'S NOT RIGHT. IT'S NOT RIGHT.

Here we go, again.

We're only two weeks into the college season, and I'm taking direct aim at the targeting rule. I can tell you right now that this is something I'm going to be complaining about again, and in the case of Saturday, again.

Take 1: Missouri linebacker Andrew Wilson was called for targeting Toledo wide receiver Markus Golden at the start of the third quarter and ended up getting ejected from the game.

WE ARE FIRED UP!

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I totally disagree.

It's a bad rule. Let me rephrase that. The rule's not bad, it's the new penalty that's bad.

Here's the definition of targeting from the NCAA Rule Book: "Targeting means that a player takes aim at an opponent for purposes of attacking with an apparent intent that goes beyond making a legal tackle or a legal block or playing the ball."

If targeting is called now, a player is ejected immediately.

Wilson did not "take aim for the purposes of attacking" nor did he "go beyond making a legal tackle."

I understand why replay wouldn't change that, because there is contact to the head or neck area with the shoulder. Therefore, they can't.

You put the officials in the middle of this and then replay can't reverse it when it's questionable.

And now Wilson will lose nearly an entire game -- since this happened just after the third quarter started, he lost the rest of this game and also will have to sit out the first half of Missouri's game next week against Indiana.

Hitting a defenseless receiver does not have to be targeting. 

Take 2: Houston linebacker Stephen Taylor was called for targeting against Temple quarterback Connor Reilly with 3:21 left in the first quarter. He was also ejected.

Was there helmet-to-helmet contact with the face mask? Yes. Was it targeting? No. He didn't even knock Reilly down.

I'm going to say it again: It's a bad penalty.

Yes, it was a foul. But I go back to the rule and the intent. Taylor did not take aim, nor did he go beyond. It's the exact same thing as the one above.

Where does the fault lie?

The first problem is the penalty. The second lies with the early results, which indicates the NCAA needs to look at this in the offseason.
 


I can't complain about the bad and not mention the good.

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Auburn linebacker Kris Frost was called for roughing on Arkansas State quarterback Adam Kennedy late in the third quarter with the Tigers leading 28-9.

It was called a targeting foul, and Frost was ejected.

Two things clearly made this the right call. Frost left his feet and launched at Kennedy, and then he obviously hit him in the head and neck area.

It was truly unnecessary and could have been avoided. And as the NCAA rule book states, "with apparent intent that goes beyond making a legal tackle."

This hit went way beyond.

And as a result, Frost will also miss the first half of the Tigers game next week vs. Mississippi State.

 


Eight is enough. Excessive, in fact, if you ask me.

The Big 12 Conference is experimenting with an eighth official this season and did so in at least two games on Saturday -- Louisiana Lafayette-KansasState and West Virginia-Oklahoma -- with the reason being to keep pace with the game's speed, spot holding and better protect players.

If you were looking for the eighth official on TV in those games, he was rarely visible. That's because they are 12-15 yards back. And the whole idea was to get the ball placed down quicker as well as giving more coverage on the blocking by tackles. But think of it logistically, for a second. The normal umpire is only 5-7 yards off the ball, so it seems to me he could spot the ball much quicker if that's what they were worried about.

I personally think that seven is enough, but I'll be interested to see what the report says at the end of the season.

The Big 12 is the only conference that is doing it and it's only a 1-year experiment and another reason for the eighth official According to is largely to see if that reduces the responsibility of the head linesman, who often drifts downfield during pass routes.

Tagged: Indiana, Arkansas State, Auburn, Missouri, Andrew Wilson, Kris Frost

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