Friday, February 8, 2013

Jim Harbaugh: A penalty is a penalty on the first play or the last play

After the officials did not call pass interference against Ravens cornerback Jimmy Smith on the 49ers’ final offensive play of the Super Bowl, many observers who agreed with the non-call said that in a key play with the championship on the line, the officials just have to let the players play.

Unsurprisingly, 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh does not agree with that.

Harbaugh said on 95.7 The Game in San Francisco that he thinks pass interference should be officiated the same way at any point in the game, and that the officials should be just as strict about calling penalties in the game’s closing seconds as they are at any other time.

“A penalty is a penalty no matter when it occurs in a game,” Harbaugh said, via “It could occur in the first play of the game. It could occur on the last play of the game, or any play in between. That’s the rules of football. You let ‘em play or let ‘em get away with something. Which would you rather have? Let’s play the rules of the game. . . . If there’s a penalty then it’s a penalty — doesn’t matter what kind of game. . . . It’s the rules of football. If it’s a penalty, you call it. If you see it, you call it. That’s how I feel about it.”

Harbaugh complained immediately after the game about the non-call, and with time to think about it, his complaints haven’t stopped. Harbaugh thinks his team got ripped off by the refs at the end of the Super Bowl.

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