As far as vocations go, football official is usually not at or near the top of most people's lists of careers. There are multiple reasons why, aside from the obvious. The first reason is you almost always have to work on the weekends. This is not the first choice of most people, since we are a monday through friday, 9-5 society. Secondly, you are required to be judge, jury, and executioner for each and every infraction perpetrated by the players and coaches. This obviously decreases your popularity with not only those directly involved in the game, but with the spectators as well. And finally, if you make even the smallest of judgement errors, you will be villified by all of the aforementioned participants. Take for example the poor sap who was officiating the recent college football game between Oregon and Oklahoma. The replay official incorrectly ruled on an onside kick that the ball traveled the minimum required 10 yards before being touched by an Oregon player. The replay clearly showed that the ball did not travel 10 yards, but the ball was given to Oregon anyway, and they proceeded to win the game. The replay official has since received death threats, has been suspended, and most recently requested a "leave of absence," which of course means that he was given the boot. Perhaps if Oregon had been playing a smaller school, much less would have been made of this situation. Since it was Oklahoma, who routinely has a chance to win the mythical national title, the sky is now falling.
Ordinarily, I understand that officials are human, and subject to human error on occasion, but when they are using instant replay, and still get it wrong, that I have a problem with. There is alot of bias within the ranks of the officials, not only in college sports, but in professional sports as well. This bias is most obvious, most people believe, in college football. I believe it's about time that officials are held accountable for their performance, and I applaud the NCAA for taking action that matters, for a change. It's no secret that schools like Oregon have been trying to gain respect across the nation, in order to move up in the polls and potentially play in a BCS game. Beating a team like Oklahoma would do just that, even if they have to cheat to win. The enourmous amounts of money given to teams playing in big bowl games at the end of the year has corrupted the game, which has resulted in college football becoming more and more irrelevant every year. People aren't watching the games as much as they used to, and soon college football won't matter at all, except to alumni. I, for one, am no longer interested.