“The Super Bowl Is As Good As It Gets!”
by:  Michael L.

BTFS (2/9/02):  There is only one word that sums up Super Bowl 36 and that’s WOW!  It was an amazing performance right down to the end for both the Rams and the Patriots.  It was also an amazing performance by the entire officiating crew.

 The league truly picked an excellent officiating crew to work this year’s Super Bowl in New Orleans.  They were all outstanding.  Referee Bernie Kukar #86 headed the entire crew that had a total of 70 years of NFL officiating experience.   This is Kukar’s second Super Bowl in four years.  He also worked Super Bowl 33 in Miami, Florida. 

 The rest of the crew was comprised of Umpire Jeff Rice #44, Head Linesman Mark Hittner #28, Line Judge Ron Phares #10, Field Judge Pete Morelli #135, Side Judge Laird Hayes #125 and Back Judge Scott Green #19.  Only two of this years selected officials has had prior Super Bowl experience; they are Bernie Kukar and Ron Phares.  Kukar has worked a total of two and Phares has worked a total of three.  The alternate officials were Referee Mike Carey #94 and Umpire Ron Botchan #110 and the Replay Assistant was Howard Slavin.

 The game went on very smoothly for everyone.  The coin toss ceremony was a very memorable one with Former President George H. W. Bush and Roger Staubach.  Mr. Bush was the honoree that was suppose to toss the coin however, he respectively handed it to Roger and he flipped it.  During the game there was a total of 11 accepted penalties and 2 declined penalties.  There was only one challenge during the game that was initiated by the replay booth during the 2nd quarter.  Replay Assistant Howard Slavin called for a review on a New England pass completion in the end zone for a touchdown.  Replays showed the pass was completed and the ruling on the field stood after Kukar reviewed the play.   

 This was an outstanding officiated Super Bowl and I would like to commend Referee Bernie Kukar #86 and the entire officiating crew for an outstanding performance.  Congratulations to all of you for a job well done!

Article by:
Michael L.
Chief Webmaster
Behind the Football Stripes