Texas Tech coach Mike Leach is mad as you know what and said he's not going to take it any more.
Leach felt the referees played an extreme pivotal role in his team losing to Texas last year, 35-31. So when Leach saw what he thought was some suspect calls against his team on Saturday when Tech played Texas in Austin, he blasted the officiating crew after the game and said the replay system and officiating system needs to be completely overhauled.
"There were some bad calls in Lubbock last year, atrociously bad -- probably even a shade worse than this year,'' Leach said after the Longhorns dismantled Tech 59-43.
Leach felt since Randy Christal lives in Austin, he had no business refereeing Saturday's game. But Christal was indeed the head referee of Saturday's game.
"For one, I don't think people that live, or alumni of the team, needs to officiate,'' Leach said. "I think there are some people (referees) that have proven to struggle in key situations that need to be eliminated.
"National championship games have actually ridden on these things by missed calls and bad officiating. If I wasn't convinced that it wasn't ridiculously obvious for you guys to go back, TiVo the game and see it, I wouldn't bring it up.''
Saturday's loss dropped Tech to 7-4 overall and 3-4 in the Big 12. Texas improved to 9-2 overall and 5-2 in the Big 12.
Leach said he's not worried about being fined or suspended by the Big 12 for his outburst.
"My willingness to look the other way for years at a time and not see what part I can do -- even if it costs me, even if it hurts me or whatever -- I'm not willing to take the back seat anymore.''
Asked if he thought there was a bias against Texas Tech, especially since so much bowl money rides on the outcome of regular season games, Leach said: "It may be incompetence, bias, I don't know. Maybe it's something as simple as guys sitting over the water cooler -- perhaps in their office in Austin -- talking to their friends about the great game they're going to see, the great players they're going to see, and then perhaps the preconceived notion has developed how it's going to come out.''
Leach was livid the Red Raiders had a long, nifty one-hand catch by Michael Crabtree reviewed and called incomplete, and had two touchdowns called back. All three plays came on the same drive and could have drawn the Red Raiders within 35-27 with 4:12 left in the third quarter.
Leach, who said he has never directly commented on the officials in his eight years at Tech, hinted that some folks with power probably want Texas in a higher bowl game than the Red Raiders. Leach said he hasn't ruled out whether the bias is completely against Tech or for Texas.
"That could be argued in a variety of directions,'' Leach said. "Perhaps there's one for Texas, perhaps somebody that's higher bowl-wise that stands to make more money has a level of preferential treatment.
"I can't guess at the motivation, but I know it needs to solved. If we get nicked like this again, we're all going to have another talk.''
Tech ends the regular season next Saturday at home against Oklahoma, and Leach said, despite his outburst, he fully expects to be on the sidelines coaching.
"And if it's atrociously bad as (the UT game), we'll talk about it some more. But I'm not standing for this.''
-- Dwain Price