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Saturday, Jan. 21, 2017

SEC takes censorship too far

Posted Monday, October 26, 2009, at 3:40 PM

Looks like the SEC's going after Lane Kiffin again.

Kiffin publicly complained after Alabama's Terrance Cody threw his helmet after blocking a field goal try that would have given the Vols a win Saturday night.

Tennessee's first-year football coach is accused of breaking the SEC's code of ethics for pointing out that officials called eight penalties against UT to one for the Crimson Tide.

"I wasn't going to let the refs lose the game for us there and some magical flag appear," Kiffin said in explaining why he had QB Jonathan Crompton spike the ball with 4 seconds left.

The SEC's already had to penalize one officiating crew this season. And they wonder why coaches complain?

I'm seeing too many situations, from the NFL to NBA to college conferences in various sports, where coaches and players are penalized for simply expressing an opinion. Pro players and coaches are often forced to pay large fines -- by entities which aren't courts.

We're talking about adults here. And "authorities" treating adults as unruly children simply for expressing an opinion is going too far.

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Technically a flag could have been thrown for excessive celebration, because the game clock had not expired. I am not sure if the penalty would have resulted in a first down, but I am going to guess that it would have since Coach Kiffin is talking about it. While my team did not win :/ , I would much rather see Alabama win because of something they did, instead of Tennessee winning because of something the ref did.

-- Posted by nathan.evans on Mon, Oct 26, 2009, at 4:15 PM

i can see why they came down on him so hard. if you look at what he said, it wasnt that the officiating was bad, it was that the officiating was less than honest. given events over the past couple of weeks, his fears appear to have some foundation. the sec has much at stake in having an championship game between undefeated alabama and undefeated florida. the officials decided the outcome of the florida-arkansas game (altho they were punished for it) the officials gave florida more boosts against miss state saturday, especially in counting a td when the florida player obviously fumbled on the 2. and then there was the tenn-alabama game. i couldnt understand why kiffin didnt run another play or two to try and get close enough for the fg to have a real chance. his statement that he feared some phantom penalty taking them out of range is a pretty strong shot at the integrity of the officiating and the conference. i am generally the first to scoff at the conspiracy theorists, but there sure have been a long string of "coincidental" bad calls helping florida and alabama stay undefeated.

-- Posted by lazarus on Tue, Oct 27, 2009, at 8:35 AM

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David Melson is a copy editor and staff writer for the Times-Gazette.