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Zebras, league fumble ball

Director of Officiating admits to 'flaws'

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 25/9/2010 (2517 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Paul LaPolice didn't get the answers he wanted to hear.

But the Winnipeg Blue Bombers head coach did get an explanation or two from CFL Director of Officiating Tom Higgins on some of the calls in Friday's loss to the Montreal Alouettes that has everyone in Bomberland frothing.

The key calls and the response from CFL HQ:

-- On the apparent offside by an Alouettes receiver on the game-winning Anthony Calvillo to Brian Bratton 48-yard touchdown with 1:38 remaining:

"It looked that way (offside) and on film it's very close," LaPolice said. "But..."

-- On the apparent Jamel Richardson fumble, recovered by Bomber defensive back Brandon Stewart just two plays before Bratton's heroics (the ruling on the field was an incomplete pass):

"If the officials rule it's an incomplete pass you can't rule whether the ball was fumbled after that," LaPolice explained.


"So, the only thing that's reviewable is whether it's catch or no catch. The problem is, on the field they ruled it an incomplete pass... it should have been ruled completed. That's a flaw in the system and Tom said it's not a good flaw. He said it was clearly a fumble and we're going to look at trying to address it.

"In the first quarter Adarius Bowman had a catch and turned and took a step-and-a-half and that was ruled a fumble. So they held their whistle and let it become a fumble, where later in the game the same situation happens and they don't rule it... that's my frustration with the consistency of it.

"He said there's no reviewable aspect of it; it was a fumble but obviously the whistle blew too quick. It's frustrating."

-- On the 40-yard pass interference call on Bomber defensive back Jovon Johnson in the third quarter with Winnipeg ahead 33-24 (the call moved the ball from Montreal's 46-yard line to the Bomber 24. Three plays later Calvillo hit Andrew Hawkins for a seven-yard TD.)

"I know those are sometimes judgment calls, but I'd like those to be more consistent," said LaPolice. "That's a huge penalty for 40 yards there... it just looked like the two guys were battling back and forth and there was no contact. It's frustrating when it's not consistent."

For the record, the Bombers were flagged 15 times for a season-high 163 yards while the Als were nailed for 12 penalties and 105 yards.


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