Do you know who Dick Honig is? I wouldn't be surprised if you didn't. He is a long time Ann Arbor resident, U of M grad and a former All Big Ten Wolverine shortstop on the Michigan Baseball team in 1962. After his playing days, he was also an assistant basketball and baseball coach for the Wolverines.
That isn't the real story. Dick was a basketball official and a football official for 20 years in the Big Ten and for 9 years in the MAC. He also has owns an store for officials gear called Dick's Whistle Stop in Ann Arbor.
Wouldn't it be great for Dick to travel a few minutes from his home and officiate a Michigan game in the Big House? It would, but you can't have an official that lives in Ann Arbor and a former Michigan grad officiate a Michigan Football game. It's a clear conflict of interest, even if the official is trust worthy and great at what he does. At the end of the day, officials are humans beings that will always lean one way or another.
The Big Ten made a huge error in the Michigan game and it wasn't the missed calls. It was the officials they put on the field.
- Kevin Schwarzel the back judge for the game, lives in Ohio and is on record as an Ohio State fan. In 2006, he was not allowed to officiate the OSU - Michigan game for conflict of interest. He was the back judge on Saturday.
- Bobby Sagers, the side judge for the game. Bobby is also from Ohio and was recently inducted in the OHSAA hall of fame in Columbus.
- Daniel Capron the lead official was fired by the Big Ten in 2002 for being a poor official.
Schwarzel and Sagers should never been on the field for the biggest game of the year. That is a clear conflict of interest. I don't know these men and I don't know their integrity, but that doesn't matter as they are humans and could not make a neutral decision. I'm less concerned with Capron, he might have become a better official in the last 14 years.
This is the huge mistake by the Big Ten and puts the entire game under a light the Big Ten will run away from as fast as they can. The Big Ten's worst fear is that a game would be fixed by officials. A conference will always back their officials even when mistakes are made on the field.
All of our arguments are "matter of opinion" on pass interference or the 4th down spot. The huge issue is there were "Ohio" officials on the field and their integrity and rooting interest has to be questioned, because they never should have been put in that position by the Big Ten. It really can't be questioned that the Big Ten made a huge mistake and could have (or did) affect the outcome. Jimmy has every right to be mad at the officials and the Big Ten for this clear conflict of interest.
- Reports are that Peppers mother is starting to interview agents. This is not a surprise.
- On the 4th down spot and the reason the booth got it wrong was the location of the Ohio State's TE butt. Barrett gets hit low by Hill, but he then runs in the butt of the #88 OSU TE and falls back two yards. If his butt is past the line, first down. His butt was clearly short of the yard to gain. There was no way the booth was going to overturn that call. There was also a good camera angle from behind that showed he was short that the booth clearly ignored.