The Mountain West Conference released some exciting news this week concerning the number of officials they will have for games in 2015.
According to Kevin McGuire of NBC Sports, instead of having the usual seven, the MWC will now have eight officials during games this season. The conference experimented with this last year, and deemed it to be successful enough to continue.
Air Force head coach Troy Calhoun shared his thoughts with the Denver Post about the change. “Love it. Absolutely love it,”. “I think there are certain expenditures you carry out that are prudent, that make sense, that make for a more quality game. That’s one of them. That’s a good investment.”
The coaches have to enjoy the fact there will be more eyes on the field during snaps. Officials are also very supportive of the new eight-man crew.
“The last two years I was on a crew of eight officials and what it allowed me to do as a referee is as soon as the play ended go right to the offense and look for substitutions,” Greg Burks, an active official and Mountain West Conference coordinator of officials said this week (via The Herald Journal) said. “And what we found out — without naming the schools — is some of them every time they would go to the sidelines, they were substituting and gaining an advantage because the (opposing) defense wasn’t able to match up.”
This is a step in the right direction to help games run more smoothly. It would be nice to see other conferences adopt this officiating change in the near future.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports