What?

"It allows you to stay close to the game," Harrison said. "I love the game. I thought about coaching, but then I felt, 'What if I have a chance to be a referee?"

">
What?

"It allows you to stay close to the game," Harrison said. "I love the game. I thought about coaching, but then I felt, 'What if I have a chance to be a referee?"

">

Rodney in stripes?

According to ESPN, Rodney "The Hit Man" Harrison is considering a post-football career as an NFL referee. <br><br> What?<br><br> "It allows you to stay close to the game," Harrison said. "I love the game. I thought about coaching, but then I felt, 'What if I have a chance to be a referee?" <br><br>

Ok... but why would a Strong Safety who has probably been fined as much money as any player in NFL history want to become part of the NFL's enforcement system?

"I want to actually be on the field when I'm done playing and still be involved. Because I played it for so long, I know the speed of the game. I think I can foresee certain things before they happen. It's just like anticipating certain situations as a player."

That doesn't really answer the question, but the whole idea is so unfathomable that one would tend to dismiss it as the musing of a player near the end, who is desperate to hang on.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

Harrison is currently flourishing with the New England Patriots, and was recently lauded by the Boston herald as the team's MVP for the season's first half.

So this referee idea is all just talk, right?

Not quite, Rodney Harrison is already scheduled to attend an officiating camp during the NFL Europe combine in March 2004. From there, he will need to work his way up, probably starting at the High School level.

"I've got no problem with doing high school games, or whatever, because I know I'll eventually make it to the NFL," Harrison said.

I'm betting most of his peers on the other side of the ball never really envisioned him in stripes one day... except for those WRs who can recall the muggings.

Gary Molyneux can be reached at drmesmetism@aol.com

SD Super Chargers Top Stories