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Ed Rush, Pac-12 officiating coordinator, resigns amid investigation

He touched the ball!
He touched the ball!
Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY

Several days ago I was informed that the manager of the Jamba Juice I make smoothies at was resigning. Wednesday she submitted her two weeks and now the manager who gave me my first opportunity in the real world of work is leaving for bigger and better things, like Starbucks. She is resigning in order to take a step up in pay grade, benefits and to work closer to home. She is moving on up in the world and advancing in her life. This is the best time to be resigning from a job: you have another, better job lined up to take as soon as you leave your current employer.

Resignations are not always in the best of circumstances, as Ed Rush resigned from his position as officiating coordinator for Pac-12 basketball. He said in a statement: "I would like to thank the Pac-12 for giving me the opportunity to lead a group of officials who are working so hard to make the Pac-12 the best officiated conference in college basketball. My first and highest concerns have always been the integrity of the game of basketball and the honor of the craft of officiating. While I am proud of what we have accomplished, my decision to resign reflects my strong desire to see the Pac-12 officiating program continue to grow and thrive."

Rush resigned in the middle of a controversy surrounding statements he had made to officials during the Pac-12 Tournament. He mentioned that whoever runs Sean Miller, head coach of Arizona, out of the game or hands him a technical would receive either $5000 or a trip to Mexico. Nobody took the comment seriously according to an investigation by the Pac-12 head of enforcing Ron Barker. Regardless, the comments stirred up a media frenzy and then ultimately led to the resignation of the man who Mark Cuban wouldn't hire "to manage a Dairy Queen."

The Pac-12 is not known for superior officiating. It is known for some of the worst officiating in the country contrarily. Rush was brought in specifically to aid in the improvement of officiating, and we may never know if he was ultimately successful, as one season is not enough time to see a substantial improvement in something as subtle as officiating. He may ultimately have had a lasting impact, but it will be credited to whomever succeeds him as officiating coordinator.

Miller was given a technical foul in Arizona's tournament game against UCLA, before which both coaches were given pre-game warnings to stay within their respective coach's boxes during the course of the game, as Bruins head coach Ben Howland confirmed. The official who assigned Miller's technical, Michael Irving (not Michael Irvin, Hall of Fame NFL wide receiver) is not currently sipping margaritas in Cancun, so it is probably safe to say that he did not receive the alleged bribe from Rush.

the 70-year old Rush has been surrounded by controversy multiple times, and knows it. He admitted that it would be "difficult to earn trust" with the players, coaches and other involved with the game because of all of the controversy that follows him wherever he goes.