It has been almost two weeks since the Ohio State Buckeyes controversially lost to the Clemson Tigers in the 2019 Fiesta Bowl. Now, it seems Buckeye Nation has a plan to make sure that the contentious referee calls that happened during the game will not be an issue again.

Members of Buckeye Nation mounted a social media campaign to urge the NCAA to fire the game’s referees and officials. They say it is important for college football officials to be accountable for their bad calls. But, no NCAA action has been taken so far.

What exactly was the controversial call that got Buckeye Nation so frustrated?

Fans believe that the referees should not have overturned Ohio State cornerback Jeff Okudah’s strip fumble scoop-and-score.

Okudah grabbed the ball away from Clemson wide receiver Justyn Ross, which led to a touchdown. After a few minutes, the officials decided to overturn the touchdown. According to them, their review officials determined that Ross was not able to successfully receive the ball from a pass. This made it an incomplete pass, which negated Okudah’s supposed touchdown.

Criticism of college bowl refereeing

Even before the 2019 Fiesta Bowl debate, there were already conversations about the future of college bowl refereeing. In 2019, a New Orleans Saints fan filed a case against the NFL for allegedly making the wrong call.

If the opposite call was made, the fan believed that the Saints could have qualified for the Super Bowl. If anything, the case proves how passionate football fans can be.

There have been calls to reassess the value of video replay to college football games. Ever since the technology became mandatory in games, video replay was considered as irrefutable evidence.

Due to the Fiesta Bowl debacle, people are now thinking that there should be a mechanism to dispute calls made by replay review officials.

However, there are football pundits who say that making bad calls is just part of the game. It may infuriate fans of teams in crucial contests but fans might just have to accept that it happens from time to time.

Kirk Herbstreit slam Buckeye Nation conspiracy theories

Meanwhile, ESPN football analyst Kirk Herbstreit aired his disapproval of the Buckeye Nation conspiracy theories that have erupted since the 2019 Fiesta Bowl.

Herbstreit said that Buckeye fans should stop peddling and spreading these conspiracy theories. He told them to accept that the Buckeyes lost the game and to hope that the team does better next time.

According to the former Ohio State quarterback, it makes little sense for ESPN to favor the Tigers over the Buckeyes. Ohio State has a reputation for drawing massive audiences for its college football games. Clemson only manages to bring a fraction of Ohio State’s numbers.

The conspiracy theories have been a popular topic on Buckeye Nation forums since December 28. According to the posts, Disney-owned ESPN wanted Clemson to win because Ohio State is a Big Ten team. It is said that Disney does not want to highlight a Big Ten team because of the conference’s media partnership with Fox Sports.

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