Florida State opposed to neutral officiating crew
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP)—Florida State athletic director Dave Hart has apologized to Florida officials for a postgame fight following the Seminoles’ 38-34 victory Saturday, but said he’s not suspending any players.
Hart apologized Monday to Florida athletic director Jeremy Foley for his team’s midfield dance on the Gators’ emblem, which sparked a fight. He said he and his coaches will put measures in place to make sure it doesn’t happen again.
“Yes, you should celebrate—no question in a game like that—but not at the expense of disrespecting the opponent, who also played their heart out,” Hart said. “That’s a part of winning with class. We’ll make certain that that does not re-occur.”
Hart also said he is opposed to using an officiating crew from a neutral conference during the annual game, something Foley said he wants to consider. Florida State benefited from several controversial calls during Saturday’s game, which was handled by a crew from the Seminoles’ Atlantic Coast Conference.
Hart said using a neutral-conference crew would send a bad message to ACC and Southeastern Conference officials, adding that other conferences would have their top crews lined up for their own games.
The present agreement between Florida and Florida State stipulates the conference of the visiting team provides the officials. The contract expires after next year’s game, and Hart said he would be willing to discuss the issue further with Foley.