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Big 12 official: Joseph’s hit vs. Sooners should have been targeting

DALLAS, Texas — Karl Joseph’s crunching sideline hit on Oklahoma receiver Dede Westbrook, a play deemed legal at the time, should have been flagged for targeting, Big 12 coordinator of officials Walt Anderson said Tuesday.

The hit that became a highlight on Joseph’s NFL draft clips led to an NCAA rule change whereby replay officials in 2016 can stop action to review targeting that wasn’t called on the field.

Anderson described Joseph’s pass breakup as “clear and obvious and evident and egregious.” Take a look:

“Clearly targeting the opponent, lowers the head, makes contact not only with the crown of the helmet, but is making no effort to lower the strike zone and avoid this,” Anderson said. “It should have been called on the field.

“We missed this and this would be one that this year we would want the instant replay official to stop.”

Mindful of stoppages that lead to four-hour games, Anderson’s staff is training replay officials to identify hits that stand out immediately.

“That doesn’t mean we’re stopping every big hit in a football game just in case it might be targeting,” he said. “The language I told the officials is we’re going to stop play on the should have’s. We’re not going to stop play on the could have’s.”

151,365 plays in Division I
161 targeting
17 targeting fouls enforced (44 reversed to no foul)
8 targeting calls in the Big 12 (4 reversed to no foul)

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