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BYU football: Two women part of Fight Hunger Bowl officiating crew

Published December 24, 2013 12:15 pm
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

San Francisco • A little bit of history will be made, regardless of the game's final result when BYU and Washington meet in Friday's Fight Hunger Bowl at AT&T Park.

Two women will be a part of the Conference USA officiating crew, marking the first time in FBS bowl history that two females will officiate a bowl game.

BYU coach Bronco Mendenhall said Monday that neither Sarah Thomas of Pascagoula, Miss., nor Maia Chaka of Virginia Beach, Va., has officiated a BYU game before, so he's not familiar with either woman's style.

Thomas will be the line judge and Chaka will be the head linesman.

However, Catherine "Cat" Condi has worked some BYU games and done a fine job, Mendenhall said.

"My guess is when you ask me after the game about them, I won't have noticed a difference, one way or the other," Mendenhall said. "With my sideline demeanor, I am not one that is aggressive with the officials, so I don't think [having two female officials] will affect us that much."

Thomas officiated the 2009 Little Caesars Pizza Bowl, while Friday's game will be Chaka's first bowl assignment.

Fight Hunger Bowl supervisor of officials Mike Pereira said all the crew members earned their way to "this prestigious assignment" with their performance during the regular season.

Not a deterrent

Senior inside receiver JD Falslev said he should be able to play with no complications Friday after breaking his hand during a team activity at the Provo Beach Resort in November. Falslev played against Notre Dame and Nevada but had to leave the Nevada game for X-rays after taking a direct hit.

"I got a helmet right on the metal piece [in his hand]," he said. "That didn't tickle. That didn't feel very good. ... It wasn't fun."

The captain believes the accident, which he called "a freak thing. I wasn't doing something stupid," won't deter coaches from conducting physical team activities — like rafting down the Provo River, or surfing the wave simulator at PBR ­— in the future.

"I don't think they will go crazy about [not] having team activities or whatever," he said. "It's just that crazy deals happen."


BYU linebacker Kyle Van Noy was named to his sixth All-America team Monday, receiving second-team honors on the 2013 Senior CLASS Award team. The teams consist of only five first-teamers and five second-teamers. ... The last time BYU and Washington met, the Cougars beat the Jake Locker-led Huskies 23-17 in Provo in 2012 with Riley Nelson and Jake Heaps rotating series as BYU's quarterback. ... According to BYU, no team in the country has won more bowl games over the last eight years than the Cougars, who have won six. ... The Cougars have scored in 124 consecutive games. —

Fight Hunger Bowl

BYU (8-4) vs. Washington (8-4)

Where • San Francisco's AT&T Park

When • Friday, 7:30 p.m. MST





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