When talking to the Seattle media over the weekend, referee Bill Leavy did his best Jim Joyce impersonation by admitting his mistakes in the Steelers-Seahawks 2006 Super Bowl.
Leavy told Seattle-area media Friday night that he “kicked two calls in the fourth quarter and I impacted the game.” He said he will “go to my grave wishing I’d been better.”
Leavy’s comments apparently inspired Steelers’ offensive tackle Max Starks to be an ass:
“He should go ahead and retire if he feels so bad about it,” Starks said Saturday, according to the McKeesport (Pa.) Daily News. “Just do us all a favor and not referee anymore.”
At least one Seahawk appreciated Leavy’s omission:
“I had a word with him and told him I really appreciated it,” said defensive tackle Craig Terrill, a backup on that Super Bowl team. “I certainly don’t have any hard feelings against him. There were plenty of things we did in that game that kept us from winning. He can’t take responsibility for the mistakes we made, but I appreciated it.”
And at least one thought it was a tad too late:
“To his credit he came out and did admit his faults, but it doesn’t make me feel any better,” Babineaux said, according to the Seattle Times. “You can’t turn back the hands of time.
“I don’t even wear my NFC championship ring. I appreciate it and I think we had a memorable season for the franchise, but I don’t wear it because in my mind that season didn’t end the way it was supposed to.”
Many people believe that Super Bowl was rigged – perhaps for Jerome Bettis, who retired following the victory in his home city of Detroit. But personally, I don’t buy into conspiracy theories and think it’s downright ridiculous for people to believe that it would be that easy to not only rig a Super Bowl, but to keep everyone involved quiet afterwards. Money would be the only way people would be motivated enough to rig something that big and I highly doubt someone would pay enough to pull off a heist like that. And for what? So that Jerome Bettis would win a Super Bowl in his home city? Come on – we’re talking about a major conspiracy here.
I think Leavy and his crew just flat out blew the calls and it obviously helped the Steelers win. Would the Seahawks have won had the calls been officiated correctly? I don’t know – maybe, although you can’t say for sure either way.
Whatever – it’s over. I tend to side with Babineaux in that Leavy should have said something right away, instead of waiting. It kind of takes the sincerity out of the omission if you wait four years to say it.