Solution To Out Of Control PI Challenges

Never liked the idea of allowing challenges of a judgement call. Now it has gotten to the point where coaches are challenging any kind of contact. It's getting ridiculous, as in the BC/Rider game, is slowing the game, killing the pace and sucking the life out of games.

I have a solution. Up the ante. Instead of just losing a challenge or timeout (what a joke that is, lose a 30 second time out to get a 2-3 minute time out during the challenge. That's a penalty?) on a PI challenge flag the team 5 yards for delay of game if they lose their challenge. I doubt we would see no more than 1/3 of the challenges we have seen so far and coaches would only throw that flag when there was something worth challenging instead of just a good opportunity for a long rest for their team.

This is my single biggest gripe about the challenge system, and the most significant change I think the league could make.

If a ruling can't be overturned in the same amount of time of time allotted to a time-out, then it should be ruled inconclusive and the ruling should stand.

Whereas if a Time out = Challenge, then you wouldn't see this:

I get it... you want the right call... but If a guy in a controlled environment watching the replay in slow motion from 6 different angles can't decide in 30 seconds, then you have to side with the guy that was 4 feet from the play and saw it happen live, and made a decision in 0.3 seconds.

the last couple of weeks the replays seem to be a LOT faster. There were a couple where I questioned if they actually watched a full take.

If you really want to sting them make it a loss of the next first down or a 10 yard penalty...at the discretion of the other team.

Further...I have said it before...these are supposed to be coaches challenges, not 'hey, I have seen 3 angles in slow motion, now it is time to challenge.' Those ones that you need to see like that...BS...coaches are not challenging a lot of those unless it is the end of the game with nothing to lose and you are challenging on a hope and prayer.there needs to be a 5-7 second clock or something from the blow down of the whistle...pretty simple...the guy who blows the play dead puts his hand up as soon as he does, looks at a pocket watch, 7, 6, 5...then starts dropping fingers...once there are no fingers the hand goes down and there are no challenges allowed. This does open the door to a coach insisting he challenged beforehand, but I tend to think that would be a pretty fast learning curve. If they want to make judgement calls challengable then it needs to be gut to gut take on the play...not gut to 'our team has seen it enough now, here is my challenge flag'

I like all the above sollutions. The one I like best (next to scrapping the rule completely this coming off season,) is dcmoses, where it hurts a lot more to be wrong on the call. Loss of yards, down, time outs, or a combination of these has to be implemented if they are going to keep the rule.

Has there been any PI penalties overturned. I can't think of any off the top of my head.

I'm hoping this is scrapped for next season.

The stats they gave during the BC/Sask game was about 26% success rate. What bugs me is the fact coaches are tossing the flag on plays were it is obvious at full speed there was no PI. The BC game Sunday night was horrible for it. Sadly it ruined what was otherwise a well played and interesting game. A rarity this season.

At least one - the brutally obvious missed call in the end zone in the Hamilton at B.C. game. That one was even more obviously interference than the one at the end of last year’s EDSF game.

I think what he is asking is if a called PI has been successfully challenged, and no, I do not think it has been. I believe all overturns have been on non-calls...PI applied where it wasn't before.

Fair enough. I think you're right that the few overturns have been challenged non-calls. But then, have there actually been many challenges of calls vs. non-calls?

I've always HATED the challenge system.

1 - The whole notion that the onus of getting the correct call being on the participating sidelines is just wrong. The onus should be wholly - not in any part - wholly upon the impartial officials. Whether the term officials pertains to the on field zebras and chain gang and/or a remote video command center, it is the LEAGUE'S job to officiate the games, it is the teams' job to just play the games.

2 - Related to point 1. In the final 3 minutes and overtime the challenge system is moot (except now for PI), only the command center can initiate a review. Why can't they just do that for the first 57 minutes too?

3 - Make replay a tool available FOR the on field officials instead of always pointing out their errors. Two guys thought he was in, one thought he was out, but did he still have possession yet? Let the referee call up the booth himself. Why not?

4 - The hanky system invites frivilous challenges. If there's a minute left before the 3MW, why not just throw your challenge before it expires? It's worth a shot, costs nothing. Chamblin did this on Sunday. Didn't have much chance of winning it but with PI incidental contact to one person is a blatant push off to another. Could get lucky. I remember Buono throwing a really stupid challenge in the 2006 WF just to ice the kicker in the last minute before the half. Riders caught a pass near the sideline well short of the first down. 3rd and 5 Barrett sends out Congi to kick from about 20 yards away. Just as they snap the ball the hanky drops. Buono wants an incomplete pass to make it a 25 yard FG on 3rd and 10. 30 seconds to half time, might as well burn that challenge flag that's about to expire in a game that was a 4 score blowout in the 2nd quarter! Stupidest challenge ever just because of the challenge system that should not be there in the first place.

The burden of justice should be 100% on the officials, 0% on the teams. It's not fair to the teams or the fans to do otherwise.

Don't quote me, but I think this weekend (in BC / SK game) they said they were 0/11 and the non calls and 7/16, and I think that included the first challenge. If those actually are the numbers then it is a pretty good challenge rate on non-calls...though there are 2-3 that were overturned that were pretty surprising.

1 - I agree, but it helps with some horrid horrid calls. I like that all turnovers are reviewed.

2 - because it would be 4 hour games +. I still think that in the final 3 minutes you should be able to challenge if you have a timeout. Command center does not catch everything, and there have been numerous times the teams kinda sat there expecting it.

3 - This would, IMO, be ideal, but would again add even more time to the games

4 - yup...it is abused and you are starting to see more of it...may as well toss it at some point...you can burn a timeout or you can get a timeout via challenge...same difference really, except you might get lucky and have something swing your way.

I'm a supporter of the challenge system, and have stated many times that I think any call or non-call should be allowed to be challenged, within the current limit of two per game. If a coach wants to challenge the ball placement after a first down, why not? No yards? Sure.

That said, I agree that frivolous challenges need to be prevented. One possible solution is give the replay official the authority to penalize a team for making a challenge that wasn't even close. For example, if a ball spot challenge doesn't move the ball at least half way to the first down marker, it's a delay of game penalty. If the accused player isn't within a half yard of being offside on an offside challenge, delay of game. Etc.. To do this, the league would need to come up with criteria for every possible challenge that would indicate whether it's frivolous or not.

I'm still on the fence with limiting the amount of time allowed to throw the challenge flag, although I'm leaning toward supporting the limit. Most obvious bad calls are obvious right away. Puts a bit more risk into making a challenge - especially if there's a penalty for totally blowing the decision.

So the fishing expedition challenges have a reasonable success rate. No wonder coaches keep trying it.

While I like the premise and believe that in a perfect world that this would be great, I see this as pretty painful because it now opens a huge judgement call for the refs on replay. Many believe there are a lot of replays messed up, and on occasion I agree, so adding in this would make it worse...plus the replays would have to be twice as long so that they could determine if it was delay of game...kinda ironic.

Yeah, it would work best on the yes/no decisions, like the two examples I stated, but would get a bit murky on the judgement calls, like PI, which is where most of the issue is coming from. But again, it's only a couple of times a game, so how much would it really delay the game?

I'm just looking for the best way of getting obvious bad calls / non-calls corrected so they don't affect the outcome of the games, but without causing too much delay. Are they there today? Not quite, but I think they're close. A few minor tweaks here and there could probably make it better. Or worse.

No need to add more judgement questioning (which is what's wrong with PI challenges in the first place). If a penalty is added it should apply to all failed challenges not just some. I suggest it only as a means of eliminating the frivilous challenges. Coaches are not going to challenge the type of plays they were challenging in the 2nd half of the BC/Rider game Sunday if they know a failed challenge will cost them yards and the down.

How about any failed challenge that didn’t take more than a few seconds ends up with a delay of game penalty? Kind of counter-intuitive, but makes sense in a way. Any calls that are so obviously correct that it only takes a quick look to confirm them - i.e. the frivilous ones - deserve a delay of game penalty. But challenges that aren’t so obvious, that need to be looked at multiple times, end up with the on-field call / non-call standing, and no delay of game penalty, just the standard loss of a time out.

What's a few seconds? 10? 20? 30? 18? When does the clock start? when the flag is thrown? When the on field official puts on the headset? And how you you justify a 5 yard delay of game penalty to the home team because their challenge was ruled on in 18 seconds, but no flag to the visitors because their challenge took 19 seconds?

It opens the door to controversey. The only way it works is as an all or nothing proposition. Yes teams will be penalized that shouldn't because they had a legitimate complaint that simply can't be supported due to not having a good video angle, however, that's a small price to pay to get rid of the kind of garbage we see every game with coaches using the PI challenge as an extended time-out.

A failed challenge because they can't find a quite good enough camera angle or one where it's so close that it's a judgement call by the replay official shouldn't result in a penalty. That eliminates challenges except for the most obvious of blown calls.

There's a big difference between the "fishing for PI" challenges (or the "wasting time to rest players" challenges) and the "we're pretty sure the ball hit the ground but the replay isn't conclusive enough" challenges.