The Pac-12 announced Wednesday that conference athletic directors have endorsed changes to the conference’s instant replay procedures following a missed targeting call in last month’s USC-Washington State game that occurred after an unauthorized Pac-12 administrator intervened with conference replay officials to overturn the original penalty.
The conference also said that it will discipline Pac-12 personnel who interfered in the replay review process and those responsible for crafting the procedures that allowed it to happen.
Pac-12 general counsel Woodie Dixon called in to the Pac-12′s replay center in San Francisco during the Sept. 21 game and lobbied replay officials there to overturn what was going to be a targeting call on Washington State’s Logan Tago after a helmet-to-helmet hit on USC quarterback JT Daniels.
The conference’s internal review found that Dixon’s call improperly influenced the replay officials’ call, though it called the incident “isolated.”
“It is clear that a mistake was made and that action needed to be taken, as nothing is more important than the safety of our student-athletes and the integrity of our competition," Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott said in a statement.
"We are determined to learn from this episode and strengthen our officiating processes as a result,” he added.
To address the issue, the Pac-12′s new instant replay guidelines put in place call for:
• The instant replay supervisor in San Francisco to have final decision-making authority and that conference administrators are prohibited in playing any kind of officiating role.
• The development of a “comprehensive manual” governing all aspects of instant replay officiating.
"Moving forward, we have confidence in the integrity of our process and the personnel charged with monitoring the process,” Pac-12 athletic directors said in a joint statement.