Unsportsmanlike Conduct Called On Replacement NFL Ref Due To Facebook Posts

By David Cohen 

One of the National Football League’s replacement officials was removed from his assignment to work the New Orleans Saints’ visit to the Carolina Panthers Sunday after ESPN informed the league that posts on his Facebook page indicated that he was a Saints fan.

The NFL’s regular officials have been locked out, so the league is using replacements from lesser levels, such as college and high school.

According to ESPN, Side Judge Brian Stropolo, who is from the New Orleans area, posted several pictures of himself wearing Saints gear on his Facebook page, including a photo of him tailgating prior to one of the team’s preseason games last month. Stropolo’s page has since been taken down.

Stropolo worked the NFL season opener between the Dallas Cowboys and New York Giants Sept. 5, after which he posted:

Thanks to everyone for all the support. The crew did a great job tonight. Next stop September 16th at Carolina vs the Saints.

According to ESPN, that post drew 73 likes, with comments including:

Hey, now be nice with those yellow flags for our Saints!!

That’s awesome you get to be an official for a Saints game! I didn’t think they would let you since your from Louisiana.

Alternate official Tim Keese replaced Stropolo for Sunday’s game, won by the host Panthers, 35-27.

Readers: Have you or any of your friends missed out on a work assignment due to posts on Facebook?

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.