BATON ROUGE, La. — Ed Orgeron is not the type to point fingers, but he would like some peace of mind after several officiating calls did not break LSU’s way in its 10-0 loss to Alabama.
“We have several (plays) we’re going to send to the league office,” Orgeron said at his Monday press conference. “I usually don’t do it, but I think there were some questionable things that happened and would like to know an explanation.”
One of those plays is the late hit called on Devin White that kept Alabama’s first scoring drive alive. White shoved quarterback Jalen Hurts just as he stepped out of bounds, with the violence of the hit looking a bit more dramatic after Hurts pinballed off teammate O.J. Howard, who was standing on the sideline. It was a bang-bang play that may well have been called correctly, but Orgeron is seeking clarification.
Had there been no flag, the Crimson Tide would have faced third-and-5 from their own 32, but instead got a fresh set of downs at their 47.
“That kept the drive alive that resulted in a touchdown,” Orgeron said. “That was a critical, critical penalty in the ballgame.”
The more obvious moment was Jalen Hurts’ 21-yard touchdown run early in the fourth quarter. The replay seemed to indicate defensive end Lewis Neal was being held up by Alabama running back Bo Scarborough as Hurts started scrambling towards the line of scrimmage.
— Ross Dellenger (@RossDellenger) November 7, 2016
Orgeron was asked about officiating in post-game presser: “I was upset.” pic.twitter.com/H9TzHqvlTL
— Ross Dellenger (@RossDellenger) November 6, 2016
“We’re going to get an interpretation,” Orgeron said of the plays that were sent to be reviewed. “The league office will let me know what their interpretation is and we’ll just go with that.”
To his credit, Neal doesn’t seem to care what the league office thinks. Even if he was held, he believes he should have made his way to Hurts.
“There’s a lot of things that could have been done differently. I don’t make excuses,” Neal said. “We’ve got to execute and make that play. If that play is made, it’s 0-0. You’ve got to live with what the refs call. They call the game. I don’t. I just have to keep playing.”