Kentucky AD Mitch Barnhart further voices Music City Bowl frustration in letter to Pac-12 VP of officiating
Kentucky athletics director Mitch Barnhart is still not happy about the officiating in the Music City Bowl, which Kentucky lost 24-23 to Northwestern on Dec. 29.
Barnhart recently penned a letter to the Pac-12’s vice president of officiating, David Coleman, to express his concerns.
While names were redacted from the letter, which was obtained via an open records request by the Lexington Herald Leader, it is apparent that Barnhart is still particularly disturbed with a ridiculous call that led to RB Benny Snell Jr.’s ejection in the first half, as well as a non-call on a late sideline hit to QB Stephen Johnson.
“We feel great disappointment that what was supposed to be a quality bowl experience for our young people and our university was marred by these incidents,” one excerpt from Barnhart’s letter stated.
On Snell’s ejection:
“The intent of the no-contact rule — protection of officials — was not adhered to in this case,” Barnhart said. “Video of the incident does not support the call made on the field or the statement made by the officiating crew postgame.
“The character and intent of a quality young man in our program have been unfairly called into question as a result.”
On the late hit to Johnson:
“Video clearly shows that he was not only hit after releasing the ball, but taken down and driven into the ground out of bounds by the defender. … No penalty was called.”
Read the full letter from Barnhart to Coleman here.