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Head of Pac-12 officiating resigns

There will be a leadership change in the Pac-12 officiating group as Tony Corrente resigned on Wednesday.

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Being an official or a referee is not an easy job. It's very easy to make a mistake in any job and when your job is to officiate spots and you make a mistake, it doesn't go unnoticed. Being the person who is in charge of making sure those officials do accurate work can't be a very easy job either and as of Wednesday night, it's no longer Tony Corrente's. Corrente resigned from his position as the Pac-12 Coordinator of Football Officiating, according to the conference.

Pac-12 officials have long been criticized. Corrente joined the conference in 2011 in an attempt to clean up the issues. While the overall officiating product may be better, a series of blown calls this season have cast a negative microscope on Pac-12 officiating once again. Resignation doesn't always mean resignation. That word is frequently used as a bow on a package of garbage to mask a person being fired. That may not be the case in this situation, however, at least according to Jon Wilner.

The immediate solution to the move was for the Pac-12 to promote Jim Blackwood to interim coordinator. The conference will hire a new coordinator in the offseason. Blackwood will be first, but soon someone else will be tasked with fixing what might be an unfixable problem. Officiating is a thankless profession that requires thick skin and a lot of work to move up the chain while slogging through low paying gigs. How many people set out to become football officials? Of those, how many of the really talented ones stick with it long enough to rise to the collegiate level? The conference has in the neighborhood of 50 officials and competes with the other college conferences and the NFL for a talent pool. That pool is made up of people who call football games on the side. Even Corrente had another job, continuing to work as a NFL on-field official.

This won't be the first change at the top of Pac-12 officiating. Mike Pereira tried to implement changes to fix it before the job went to Corrente. Dave Cutaia held the job before that. Pac-12 officiating was much maligned then and it is much maligned now. Will Blackwood or the next coordinator change things? Probably not. But hey, maybe if you shuffle the cards enough you'll eventually turn up an ace.


Top Pac-12 football official resigns - ESPN
In the wake of a tumultuous couple of weeks for Pac-12 officials, the league's coordinator of football officiating has resigned. The Pac-12 announced Tony Corrente's resignation in a release Wednesday night, citing personal and professional reasons.

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