It isn't exactly instant replay, but the Oklahoma Supreme Court will be reviewing film of a high school playoff game to determine if a quarterback should be suspended for kicking an opposing player.
The Oklahoma Class 5A playoffs are on hold until the court rules.
The state's highest court agreed yesterday to take the case and expedite a ruling on an appeal of a lower court opinion that reinstated Shawnee quarterback Tucker Brown.
Gov. Brad Henry, a graduate of Shawnee High School, even weighed in on the controversy, saying a court fight could have been avoided by some "reasonable officiating."
Under an order signed yesterday by Chief Justice Joseph M. Watt, Dec. 10 is the earliest a Class 5A playoff game between Shawnee and Tulsa East Central High School could be played, a two-week delay.
Brown, son of Shawnee Coach Billy Brown, was ejected for violating the Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association's anti-fighting rule with 19 seconds left in Shawnee's Nov. 19 game in which the Wolves defeated Tulsa Washington, 14-10.
Brown was kneeling in an effort to run out the clock when Washington's Jermaine Holmes jumped over the line of scrimmage, grabbed Brown's helmet and pulled him to the ground. Brown responded by kicking Holmes.
Pottawatomie County Judge Paul Vassar ruled against the OSSAA in a case brought by Suzanne Leigh Brown, the quarterback's mother.
Henry, who watched the game, said he understood the OSSAA "has a need to uphold the ruling of their officials" but implied that officials overreacted by ejecting Brown.
"It's just sad. It's a shame that this ended up in the courts and it probably could have all been avoided by just some reasonable officiating at the end. That's all I'm going to say," the governor said.
-- From News Services