Texas Tech radio announcers removed from calling next football game after criticizing officials on air
19th November 2021

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Texas Tech football’s radio announcers are in deep water.

Play-by-play man Brian Jensen and analyst John Harris ripped game officials during the team’s 41-38 home victory against Iowa State Saturday, and now they’re being punished for speaking out. 

On Wednesday, the Big 12 issued a public reprimand of the team’s announcers that prohibits them from calling this weekend’s game against Oklahoma State. 

Defensive back Jett Whitfield (38) of the Texas Tech Red Raiders celebrates after a game against the Iowa State Cyclones Nov. 13, 2021 in Lubbock, Texas.
(Photo by John E. Moore III/Getty Images)

“I understand the roles of the play-by-play and color analyst,” Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby said in a statement. “However as university representatives, they also have an obligation to adhere to conference policy regarding comments about game officials. The comments by the Red Raider Radio Network booth announcers were contrary to expected levels of respect and professionalism. Questioning the integrity of conference officials and specifically calling out members of the officiating crew is well beyond appropriate and permissible behavior.”

The announcers went after the officials when they overturned an interception at the goal line by Texas Tech defensive back Dadrion Taylor-Demerson with 7:25 to go in the game. 

Linebacker Derrick Lewis II of the Texas Tech Red Raiders celebrates after a win against the Iowa State Cyclones Nov. 13, 2021, in Lubbock, Texas.
(Photo by John E. Moore III/Getty Images)

“I’ll say it right now, the Big 12 does not want Iowa State to lose this game,” Harris said during the broadcast. 

“Yeah, Bob Bowlsby, you need to answer to this,” Jensen added. “This is ridiculous. The inconsistency of this referee crew in favor of Iowa State. Unbelievable.”

After the officials reversed the call, Texas Tech students started throwing objects onto the field. Officials issued the Red Raiders an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty, and the students were forced to leave the stadium.

That’s when Jensen went after the Big 12.

“The Big 12 should be embarrassed,” he said. “The Big 12 should be embarrassed with this group. We’ve only pointed out two guys. I’m gonna read ’em all to you.”

Sections 22 and 23 are empty after fans were ordered to exit the stadium for throwing items onto the field during the second half of a game between the Texas Tech Red Raiders and the Iowa State Cyclones Nov. 13, 2021, in Lubbock, Texas.
(Photo by John E. Moore III/Getty Images)

Jensen, who started to name every official of the crew on air, also tweeted during the game about another call. He was wondering why there was no review on a play that was ruled an interception, even though tight end Travis Koontz looked as if he was down before the ball came loose.

Despite the broadcasters frustration, Texas Tech kicker Jonathan Garibay booted a 62-yard game-winning field goal as time expired for the win.

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