Sunday, September 28, 2008

Ed Hochuli Again In The Spotlight

Ed Hochuli was already in the hot seat for his call in the game between the Denver Broncos and San Diego Chargers. Now, another controversial call in the game between the Atlanta Falcons and Carolina Panthers. Julius Peppers hit Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan and referee Ed Hochuli called it roughing the passer for a helmet-to-helmet hit, although replays show that it was not a good call. It's controversial because it negated what would have been an interception by the Carolina Panthers that they returned for a touchdown.

Do the referee tendencies from the first three weeks of 2008 and the 2007 season show anything?

One theory is that some referees unconsciously help the home team more than others. That doesn't really explain Ed Hochuli's two calls because one helped the home team (the Broncos) and one helped the visiting team (the Falcons).

Another theory is that some referees call a game that helps the offense more and on average that would tend to lead to higher scoring games. Ed Hochuli's two calls each helped the offense. He threw the flag before he knew the interception would be returned for a touchdown so it might be consistent with higher-scoring games. Over the first 3 weeks of 2008, Ed Hochuli is 3rd of 17 in penalties per game and 8th of 17 in total points per game. In 2007, he was 5th of 17 in penalties per game and 3rd of 17 in total points per game.

The statistics only slightly suggest perhaps a tendency to help the offense. Might just be bad calls by chance by Ed Hochuli.


Post a Comment

<< Home