Check this image of Florida's Tim Tebow being down at the Arkansas' 19-yard line and a yard short of a first down in the closing minute of Saturday's game in Gainesville. When the Southeastern Conference officiating crew marked the ball, the Gators were given a first down!
This is at least the fourth officiating error — all which went against Arkansas — in the final eight minutes of the game, won by Florida, 23-20.
The series of calls were so egregious that even Terrell Owens posted this comment on his Twitter feed while watching the telecast:
"Refs r str8 CHEATING n this florida/arkansas game!! A phantom P.I. call on #26, personal foul on #96 & no OPI call on UF's #11!"
This officiating crew was the same group that made a controversial call on Georgia's A.J. Green for excessive celebration in an Oct. 3 game against Louisiana State. That call helped the Tigers, trailing 13-12, score a touchdown and two-point conversion in the final minute of their 20-13 victory.
Connect the dots. That win set up the Oct. 10 game between unbeatens Florida and LSU.
There's a lot riding on Florida and Alabama advancing to the SEC title game with unbeaten records. A competitive SEC title game could set up a second matchup between the Gators and Crimson Tide in the BCS title game and that would mean a pocketful of cash for the SEC.
Back to last Saturday. SEC officials, faced with the obvious, have acknowledged that one of the calls in the Arkansas-Florida game was incorrect, and Razorback coach Bobby Petrino expressed his displeasure during his TV show Sunday night.
"It's unfortunate that the fourth quarter there's probably three plays that the officials made the difference in the game,'' he said.
View those three plays by clicking here.