Cathedral High School was just about to cap off an undefeated season with a Super Bowl victory when Matthew Owens scampered down the field to put Cathedral H.S. on top against rival Blue Hills Regional Technical School in the Division 4A Super Bowl game held at Bentley University on Saturday. Owens reached the 20 yard-line of Blue Hills Regional, threw up a single triumphant fist pump, ran into the end zone and handed the ball to the referee. When Owens turned around there was a flag on the field. Sure his first thought was probably a holding call on the offense, but when Owens was called for an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty he was stunned. Owens was flagged for “taunting” from when he threw his fist up in the air in celebration and Blue Hills Regional went on to win the game 16-14. Cathedral H.S. Coach was not exactly thrilled either. Coach Duane Sigsbury stated, “If you’re going to take away from a kid being excited because he just made the play of his life, shame on you.” I could not agree more with the coach on this one. It’s an absolute disgrace that this referee flags a player at such an important time in such an important game for such a ridiculous penalty. This referee needs to be reprimanded. The best referee is one that goes unnoticed, and this guy did a really terrible job at that. He took away a Super Bowl title from a whole school and completely ruined Matthew Owens’ dreams. If Owens had spiked the ball and actually taunted the opponent, than shame on him and it would have been well deserved, but when an 18-year-old kid raises his hand in the air when scoring a Super Bowl winning touchdown and a referee flags him for it, that’s a disgrace and the MIAA should be ashamed of themselves. Take a look at the photo below and let us know if you think Owens deserved to be flagged.
If the rules say that what he did is taunting, then he was taunting. The time to disagree with yet another new ridiculous politically correct rule was before the season started, not after the Super Bowl. The referee simply did his job and enforced the rule. He does not need to be reprimanded, the rule needs to be changed. However, the rule has been in effect all season and if the kid still did not understand the rule at this point, then shame on him and shame on his coach. Moreover, the players were told of the rule at breakfast and again just prior to the start of the game. Furthermore, Catherdral was actually called for taunting earlier in the game, leaving no doubt that the rule would in fact be enforced. Bottom line, the kid made a foolish mental error at a key point in a game and must live with it. So does the coach, who even after a full season and playoffs, apparently still could not get his players to comprehend the basic rules of the game.
This is NOT considered taunting in the rule book and what this ref did is assinine. He definitely deserves to be reprimanded and should not have even been on the field in the first place. I have friends who know this person and he likes nothing better then to draw attention to himself. He once threw a flag from the sidelines while watching a game in civilian clothes. Who does that? Your best officiating crew should be out there for a superbowl and the only reason this guy was there is favoritism and politics. Basic rules of the game? How about common sense? My father is a ref and even he said the call was ridiculous. You are in the minority with your opinion.
There is No way this is considered tauting in the Rule Book.
I have no vested interest in the outcome of this game on either side.
I am from the Midwest and speechless from this being called a penalty.
From my take this is a disgrace to all Refs and to the game of Football.
Many good Refs in all sports; is to bad you get some who want to play GOD.
Very Sad Day for Refs and Fans in all sports.
This is as bad as the umpire who called the guy safe for Armando Galarraga’s Perfect Game. A referee is imperfect. If we wanted a perfect game we would watch a fucking instant replay after each call. The umpire noted his mistake and apologized, yet Armando never got his perfect game. This kid (he’s a fucking kid) just won the biggest game of his life in front of his family and teammates, and you’re going to have the balls to take that away from him? No…this isn’t right, and I don’t care if the same call was issued before. It was a hand in the air. *and Robert Jordan, mental mistake? I don’t know if you’ve ever played in a competitive sport, but this kid’s adrenaline was jacked. If you’re going to make this call because he was excited and happy at that moment in the game, then you should also issue a penalty to the opposing team who most likely waved their arms in defeat. “Oh shit, that kid is crying, well that’s got to be a penalty because he is showing an excessive amount of emotion”
….and boom goes the dynamite
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