Review Rules Play a Role

Times Staff Writer

The difference between NFL and college football rules when it comes to reviewing close calls was a lesson driven home a couple of times in Wednesday's Rose Bowl game.

In the NFL, a coach can demand a review and it costs him a timeout only if he's wrong.

In college football, a coach can beg for a review all he wants on the field, but only the replay official in the press box can call for one.

And at a key time in the second quarter, on a Vince Young lateral to Selvin Young that went for a 12-yard scoring play that put Texas ahead, 9-7, the call for review never came.

Television replays clearly showed that Vince Young's knee was on the ground before the Texas quarterback pitched the ball. And there was some question that he might have pitched the ball forward, which would have been a penalty.

But there was no review, despite protests from USC.

Coach Pete Carroll could have done more than protest, however. He could have called a timeout and used it to beg for a review, hoping that worked -- as it did for Michigan's Lloyd Carr last week in the Alamo Bowl against Nebraska. The Wolverine coach protested enough to where he got a review and a call was overturned.

Through a spokesman, David Parry, the national supervisor of officials, declined to answer questions on why the Texas touchdown was not reviewed.

The officiating crew was from the Big Ten Conference, and the conference policy, Parry noted, is to not comment on replay decisions.

The replay official had the same access to TV replays available to the networks.

Earlier in the game, Texas got a review after what was ruled on the field as an incomplete pass, and the replay official awarded Longhorn safety Michael Griffin with an interception in the end zone -- the right call.

That killed a USC drive that had taken the Trojans from their 27 to the Texas 25.

There was another key review early in the fourth quarter, when a Vince Young pass to Jamaal Charles was ruled incomplete on the field.

Replays seemed to indicate that Charles had possession of the ball, then lost it, with USC recovering.

But after a review, the play stood as called on the field and Texas went on to score on a 34-yard field goal by David Pino to trim USC's lead to 31-26 with 8 minutes 46 seconds left.

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