ACC Suspends Officials For Missed Calls in Wild Miami/Duke Finish
The ACC announced late Sunday that the officiating crew and review officials from yesterday’s Miami/Duke game would be suspended for two games after a series of errors on a wild final play that cost No. 22 Duke the win.
In case you’ve been living under a rock for the last 24 hours, here is how things went down. After taking a 27-24 lead with six seconds left, Duke kicked off to the Hurricanes who, eight laterals, 91 yards and 46 seconds later, scored the winning touchdown.
But according to the ACC, the on-field and replay officials made several key mistakes that should have resulted in the play being called back. Specifically,
- On-field officials threw a flag for one block in the back, but erroneously picked the flag up on that call.
- They also missed a second block in the back.
- Replay officials, who studied the play for nine minutes, missed Miami’s Mark Walton’s knee clearly being down at the 26-yard line before pitching the ball.
In a statement, ACC commissioner John Swofford admitted that the game should have gone to Duke, saying, “The quality of our officiating program is of the highest importance to the league and its schools, and the last play of the game was not handled appropriately.”
But the league’s statement was little consolation to Duke coach David Cutcliffe, who said, “It’s frustrating that we can’t get the score right and reverse the decision . . . If we want to get it right, let’s get it right. Otherwise, let’s not have replay.”