Officials drop Heidelberg from unbeaten ranks
Published: October 22, 2010
- Game story: Heidelberg still perfect after rout of Wiesbaden
DODDS-Europe athletic director Karen Seadore announced via e-mail on Friday that the previously unbeaten Heidelberg Lions football team had forfeited its 54-19 on-field victory last Saturday at Wiesbaden for refusing to take the field for a conversion try by the Warriors at game’s end.
Seadore’s e-mail read as follows:
“On Saturday, 9 October, the Heidelberg Lions failed to put their team on the field after being directed to do by the referee.
“Heidelberg will forfeit the game played on 9 October as stated by the referee (see statement below) in accordance with the rules outlined in this message. Final score of the game: Wiesbaden 1-Heidelberg 0.”
The decision has little effect on Heidelberg, which retains the Division I-South crown and a home game against the I-North runner-up in the European Division I semifinals on Oct. 30. However, its record drops from 5-0 to 4-1 going into Saturday's regular-season finale at 2-3 Patch.
Biggest change is for Wiesbaden, which earned a D-I semifinal berth via the forfeit. Wiesbaden improved to 3-2 from 2-3 going into its regular season finale Saturday at 1-4 Vilseck. Even if the Warriors should lose and Patch win to forge a 3-3 tie with Wiesbaden, the Warriors would enjoy a plus-one points-differential tiebreaker edge over the Panthers.
In her e-mail, Seadore included the statement submitted to her office by the Heidelberg-Wiesbaden referee, whom she preferred not to identify. (“NFHS” stands for National Federation of High School Associations.)
“After conferring with my officiating crew from the game between Heidelberg and Wiesbaden played at Wiesbaden High School on 9 Oct 10 we all agree that the action that the Heidelberg team displayed at the end of the game was unsportsmanlike and that NFHS Rule 3.3.6 Article 3 is applicable and the penalty associated with this rule infraction applies and should be enforced.
“As the referee of the game on the aforementioned date, time and place at no time did I communicate or take action to end the game after Wiesbaden HS touchdown was scored or prior to Heidelberg team leaving the field of play. In addition, Heidelberg coaching staff had ample time to request clarification of the officiating actions being taken prior to my issuing an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for Heidelberg team not being ready to play and me asking them to return to the field. After the unsportsmanlike penalty was enforced the Heidelberg team had another opportunity and ample time to return to the field upon my request but chose not to do so nor did the coaching staff ask for any clarification or a conference to discuss the officiating crew's actions regarding the point after touchdown being played.
“In this case, my request as referee and action to have Heidelberg team return to the field of play was totally ignored by the Heidelberg coaching staff and the Heidelberg team did not return to the field of play. With the ensuing action, the crew assessed the unsportsmanlike conduct penalty and allowed Wiesbaden team to snap the ball for the point after touchdown, where they took a knee due to Heidelberg team not being on the field of play.
“Based on the actions that occurred at the end of the game, National Federation of High School football rules; failure of a team to play within two minutes after being ordered to do so by the referee, results in a penalty. The penalty for this action is forfeiture of the game.
“Reference: 2010 NFHS Football Rule Book (Rule 3. 3. Section 6 Article 3 Page 45).
“NFHS Rule 1.1.6: The referee has the authority to rule promptly, and in the spirit of good sportsmanship, on any situation not specifically covered in the rules. The referee’s decisions are final in all matters pertaining to the game.
“NFHS Rule 1.1.8: The officials’ jurisdiction extends through the referee’s declaration of the end of the fourth period or overtime.
“NFHS Rule 1.1.10: The referee’s decision to forfeit a game is final.
“NFHS Rule 3.3.5: At the end of each period the referee shall hold the ball in one hand overhead to indicate the period has officially ended, after delaying momentarily to ensure that :
“a. No foul has occurred
”b. No obvious timing error has occurred
“c.No request for a coach-referee conference has occurred
“d.No other irregularity has occurred.
“NFHS Case Book: Rule 3.3.5 COMMENT: The game is officially over when the referee holds the ball overhead, or if he forgets to do this, when he leaves the field. Before doing this however, he should pause briefly and glance to both sidelines and make sure there are no fouls, no obvious timing error, no request for a coach-referee conference, etc.”
COMMENTS ARE NO LONGER BEING ACCEPTED FOR THIS BLOG POST.