Michigan Football lost to Ohio State Saturday, 30-27 in double overtime. Afterwards, Jim Harbaugh said he was bitterly disappointed in the officials and here’s why he should be.
There are a lot of reasons Michigan football lost to Ohio State. But one reason it shouldn’t have, was the officiating, which Jim Harbaugh is fuming over.
The bottom line is, the refs were awful and in the end, their bad calls or no calls, cost Michigan football, dearly.
Often times, when coaches criticize officials, it seems like sour grapes. And it’s no secret that Harbaugh tends to be hard on refs. But after a number of apparent missed calls in the Wolverines 30-27 loss, his outrage is justified.
If you haven’t heard it, here is what Harbaugh said after the game:
Harbaugh furious pic.twitter.com/rEA6ycDXDq
— angelique (@chengelis) November 26, 2016
Harbaugh is “bitterly disappointed” about some of the calls that went against his Michigan football team and he absolutely should be.
One came on the fourth-and-one play in double overtime that decided the game. Watching it live, I thought J.T. Barrett was stopped short. (In the highlight video below, you can judge for yourself).
To me, Barrett appeared to run into his own blocker and then had the ball pulled back before it reached first down mark.
Of course, the officials called it other way. It was reviewed, but there’s no way to overturn a call like that.
Just hard to get enough visual evidence.
Ohio got the first down, then a touchdown. Game over.
The other call Harbaugh mentioned was the third down on the previous possession. Quarterback Wilton Speight targeted Grant Perry, who had a step on a Buckeyes defender.
Before the ball got there, Perry was clearly grabbed. The pass fell incomplete, no flag was thrown.
The Buckeyes got essentially the same call in the first quarter. Yet, on numerous occasions, Ohio State defenders got away with early contact, even blatant holding.
Speaking of pass interference, on Ohio State’s last possession in regulation, they got a controversial call against Delano Hill.
Hill did get there a little early, but as Harbaugh pointed out the ball was clearly not catchable.
Ohio State got the call. It also got a first down when it would have been fourth. Ultimately, it led to the game-tying field goal. Had Michigan got the stop it deserved, maybe it could have run the clock out. We’ll never know.
Personally, the call against Harbaugh, the 15-yard personal foul for throwing his clipboard was also over the top.
That gave Ohio State a first and goal instead of starting around the 20. And for a group of officials who seemed dead set against calling anything, it seemed strange.
In truth, Michigan football had plenty of other chances to win the game. Three turnovers and zero fourth-quarter points, won’t get it done against Urban Meyer and Ohio State.
However, there is no question, that on numerous occasions, Michigan football got the short end of the stick from the officials.
So even if it does sound a little like sour grapes, Harbaugh, in my opinion, has every right to be bitterly disappointed about that officiating disaster.