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#pounditWednesday, February 28, 2024

Lincoln Riley blasts refs after USC’s loss to Utah

Lincoln Riley with USC

Apr 23, 2022; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Southern California Trojans coach Lincoln Riley during the spring game at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

USC was on the losing end of an epic shootout with Utah on Saturday night, and Lincoln Riley openly criticized the officiating crew after the game.

The Trojans were called for a season-high 12 penalties in their 43-42 loss. Those penalties included a pair of questionable roughing the passer calls. One of them negated an interception in the first quarter. USC was leading 14-0 at the time, and Utah went on to score a touchdown on the drive. You can see the play below:

The other roughing the passer call was just as costly. It came on 3rd-and-6 when Utah had the ball at their own 36. The Utes scored a touchdown on that drive as well to tie the score at 35-35.

Riley called the officiating “really poor” while speaking with reporters after the game.

While Riley said he was not blaming the loss on the officiating, you can understand why he was not happy. Both calls came at crucial moments in the game. Had the interception stood with USC leading 14-0, it is possible the Trojans would have gone up 21-0. That could have changed the game dramatically.

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