Pac-12 football officials bungle another big call in USC-Arizona game

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TUCSON – Here we go again.

If Pac-12 football officiating wasn’t already viewed in a laughable light, the situation that unfolded in the final five seconds of the first half of Saturday’s Arizona vs. USC game will push it over the top.

Here’s what transpired: 

USC quarterback Caleb Williams completed a pass to Brenden Rice for 34 yards to the Arizona 10-yard line with five seconds left in the half. USC raced to the line to either run a play or spike the ball. 


Since the play resulted in a first down, the clock is not supposed to start until the official spots the ball. The clock clearly started to run well before the official spotted the ball, and it ran out before USC could snap it. 

The Trojans still snapped the ball, and Williams ran around for a few seconds and fired a pass into the end zone while players stood around, confused, and officials hesitantly blew their whistles. 

The officials briefly huddled … and declared the half was over. 

Lincoln Riley was beyond furious. The Pac-12 Network commentators – specifically Ted Robinson – did not hold back. 

Bottom line: USC should have had plenty of time to either spike the ball – and kick a field goal – or run a play and try to score a touchdown. The Pac-12 football officials took at least three points away from USC.

Beyond embarrassing.

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