Super Bowl officials 2013: Referee, crew named for Sunday

Jared Wickerham

We take a look at the NFL's decision on the officiating crew for Super Bowl 47. We also break down some of the controversy surrounding the decisions.

The NFL announced the officials for Super Bowl 47, in a decision that was not the biggest secret. The folks at Football Zebras were reporting on this several weeks ago, and the NFL has now officially confirmed it.

Jerome Boger will handle the referee duties on Sunday for 49ers vs. Ravens. You can view more info on him at Pro Football Reference's officials page. He will be joined by Darrell Jenkins (umpire), teve Stelljes (head linesman), Byron Boston (line judge), Craig Wrolstad (field judge), Joe Larrew (side judge) and Dino Paganelli (back judge). Bill Spyksma will be the replay official, and Terry Sullivan will be the replay assistant.

Boger, in his ninth season as an NFL game official, entered the league in 2004 as a line judge and was promoted to referee in 2006. He has officiated four divisional playoff games, including the 49ers-Packers divisional matchup three weeks ago.

The NFL has an evaluation system in place, under which the highest-rated eligible officials at each position, with five years of NFL experience and previous playoff assignments, earn the right to work the Super Bowl.

It should surprise nobody that this decision has brought a little bit of controversy. It wouldn't be the biggest stage in American sports without a little controversy.

Earlier this week, the New York Times had an article in which a previous official claimed the best officials are not in fact working the best games. Former official Jim Daopoulos believes the league altered the grading of some officials, including referee Jerome Boger because they had a predetermined assignment in mind.

Ben Austro, founder of FootballZebras.com, provided some specific examples of why there seemed to be discrepancies. Apparently Boger had numerous "dings" for calls that were later overturned. I'm not really sure why the league would be overturning grades in these instances, but it certainly raises some question marks about the officials.

POSITION

UNIFORM NO.

OFFICIAL

NFL SEASONS

CAREER PLAYOFF GAMES

Referee

23

Jerome Boger

9

4

Umpire

76

Darrell Jenkins

11

6

Head Linesman

22

Steve Stelljes

11

6

Line Judge

18

Byron Boston

18

16

Field Judge

4

Craig Wrolstad

10

7

Side Judge

73

Joe Larrew

11

6

Back Judge

105

Dino Paganelli

7

5

X
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