SEC Reprimands Petrino

FAYETTEVILLE — A day after suspending an officiating crew, the Southeastern Conference turned its attention to Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino.

SEC commissioner Mike Slive reprimanded Petrino on Thursday for publicly criticizing the officiating crew that made several controversial calls that helped second-ranked Florida escape with a 23-20 win over Arkansas in Ben Hill Griffin Stadium.

"Coach Petrino has violated the Southeastern Conference Code of Ethics," Slive said in a statement. "SEC Bylaw 10.5.4 clearly states that coaches, players and support personnel shall refrain from all public criticism of officials."

SEC spokesman Charles Bloom said in an e-mail Thursday night that Petrino was being reprimanded for the comments he made on his TV show the day after the Florida loss. On the show, Petrino said, "When they hit you when you're on the white, it's supposed to be a late hit, a 15-yard penalty. Unfortunately, in Florida, they don't call it that way."

The reprimand came a day after the SEC announced that it was suspending the officiating crew that worked Saturday's game at Florida until Nov. 14.

The league also said this week that there was no video evidence to support the officials calling a personal foul penalty on Arkansas defensive tackle Malcolm Sheppard as Florida was driving downfield midway through the fourth quarter.

On the play immediately following the penalty, Florida's Jeff Demps ran for a 10-yard touchdown to tie the score at 20-20 with 7 minutes, 27 seconds remaining.

Hawgs Daily Top Stories