Pac-12 reprimands officials over ASU-Wisconsin finish

The Pac-12 announced Monday it has reprimanded and given additional sanctions to the officials in Arizona State’s win over Wisconsin on Saturday for “failing to properly administer the end of game situation and act with appropriate urgency on the game’s final play.”

ASU won the game 32-30 after a confusing and bizarre finish. With 18 seconds left, Wisconsin quarterback Joel Stave ran to the middle of the field and kneeled to set up a potential game-winning field goal from 32 yards out. Though a whistle blew the play dead upon the kneeldown, ASU players apparently did not see Stave take a knee and dove on the ball as if it had been fumbled when Stave placed it on the ground.

ASU players remained on the ball for about eight seconds as the clock ran, and when they were off the ball, the umpire stood over it and did not allow Wisconsin to snap it until there was no time left. The Pac-12 said in it’s statement “neither the referee nor anyone on his crew moved with appropriate urgency to clearly communicate that the ball was to be spotted so play could resume promptly.”

“This was an unusual situation to end the game,” Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott said. “After a thorough review, we have determined that the officials fell short of the high standard in which Pac-12 games should be managed. We will continue to work with all our officials to ensure this type of situation never occurs again.”

Jack Folliard was the referee of the officiating crew. Folliard is a veteran Pac-12 official who is executive director of the Oregon Athletic Officials Association, according the organization’s website.

Wisconsin coach Gary Andersen attempted to get an explanation from officials on the field at the end of the game, but they left the field quickly without any explanation.

“It is a shame that it went down that way,” Andersen said.

At his weekly press conference Monday, Andersen expressed satisfaction with the Pac-12’s statement but said it was “not enough” for him.

“It’s accountability, which at the end of the day is what we asked for,” Andersen said.