Imagine being the head of the Michigan High School Athletic Association and you just watched Iron Mountain drive 500 miles to have a State Title taken away from them because your referees decided to make it about them. What would you do? Would you issue an apology? Replay the plays? Ask the referees to issue an apology? Fire the referee’s? I tell you what I wouldn’t do give the most simple response, which of course happened. It’s time the MHSAA owns up to it’s mistakes. Is refereeing a tough job? Yes, I’ve done it. But if it’s that tough for your referee’s they shouldn’t be calling a STATE TITLE, bring in college referees.
The response from the MHSAA over the two calls that cost a high school a championship?
“We have received hundreds of comments on social media about Saturday’s Division 3 boys basketball championship game, and that is understandable. When a championship game played between two undefeated teams is decided by such a close margin, there will be strong emotions on both sides. However, continuing the controversy does nothing to benefit either of the participants – not the team that feels it had a championship taken away, nor the team awarded the championship trophy.
The MHSAA Office cannot debate judgment calls. Qualified officials are placed on the court to make those calls. We will continue to provide full support to our officials who have the courage to make split-second, real-time decisions in front of thousands of fans.”
Athletic directors have to make sure coaches are up to standard, coaches have to make players are performing… Who is holding the referees accountable? Listen. At this point.. All everyone is asking for is an apology. And you give us the softest reply possible.
Some of the top comments on the post?
Andrea Cocking Celello This official statement is a cop-out. The Division 3 game was a hard fought one between 2 very good teams. The Pewamo-Westphalia boys are not to blame, but their win is tainted. The officials may have made split-second, real-time calls, but that does not make them right calls. Furthermore, this has nothing to do with courage of the referees; this has to do with the courage of the MHSAA to admit that the calls were bogus and that Iron Mountain was stripped of a state championship that they deserved!
Scott Celello The problem is you didn’t have qualified officials for that stage. You don’t assign them on merit you rotate them through to make them feel good. That needs to change. You require the coaches and a couple players on both teams be made available to media why don’t you release statements from the officials? They don’t need to be put in a public forum but would be nice to hear their explanations on such controversial calls.
Rob Pomeroy If you are going to continue to have the finals in a great facility like the Breslin, then use the instant replay system that is available. With the state of technology available today, there is no excuse to not get it right in a state championship game.
Kevin Londo I was an official also …worse call in the history of high school sports.
Carl Koski Holy evasion, Batman. We all appreciate that the referees do a hard job. That is not a blank check. It is small comfort to not one but two teams of young men who had championships taken from them. The D1 game also would have had a different outcome if a travel that did occur had been called. As an out-of-state observer with no rooting interest in either game, you got them both wrong. We expect accountability from our student athletes. We should expect even more of it from adult referees as well.
Denae Brock we all know MHSAA knows the calls were wrong…they are just afraid to admit it….all the IM boys want is an apology…MHSAA is just creating a bigger fire by not admitting it…no one is asking for anything to be changed…just for a simple apology…own up to the mistake MHSAA
Michael Ostermeyer Jim Joyce have a tearfelt apology to Galaraga when he blew the call on his perfect game. Tiger fans and even the pitcher gave him an ovation the next day at the ballpark. These two refs should do the same.