Hired as the Pac-12’s interim coordinator of football officiating last month, Mike Pereira has wasted little time in putting his stamp on the oft-criticized group.
And by “putting his stamp on”, we mean “giving the boot to the most underwhelming performers”.
As part of his revamping of the entire officiating program, Pereira confirmed to Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times that the Pac-12 will have 16 new officials in 2011. A total of 11 officials who worked conference games in 2010 “did not have their contracts renewed“, while another retired. Those officials will be replaced by individuals who worked Mountain West, WAC and Big 12 games last year.
The reasoning behind the turnover was quite simple: Pereira felt that the officials who are no longer a part of the conference’s on-field group weren’t performing at an acceptable level.
“I certainly did not think that for a geographic area like the West Coast that can draw from a lot of officials, I certainly didn’t think it was at the level that it could be,” he said. “I’m not saying it was horrible, but it was not at the level that it deserved to be and that this conference deserves to have.”
In addition to hiring new officials, Pereira is also adding seven supervisors to oversee all seven of the officiating positions. Pereira said that six of those supervisors are active NFL officials who will work during the week with the Pac-12, critiquing the officiating position they’re charged with overseeing.
Prior to the hiring of supervisors, the conference had utilized just a coordinator, a couple of trainers and people who evaluated each game. Pereira added that the Pac-12 will be the first conference to employ this type of supervisory system.
As the interim coordinator, Pereira will be replaced by a permanent coordinator at some point this spring. He will still remain attached to the conference in an advisory role through next season.
In other words, Pereira still has his eyes on you, potential slackers. So watch your step. And your back.