Dean Blandino, former senior vice president of officiating for the NFL, is expected to become the new National Director of Instant Replay for college football, multiple sources have told Football Zebras. This position was created by College Football Officiating in 2016, and Blandino will be replacing the first person to hold the position, Jim Blackwood.
In this new position, Blandino will be the go-to person nationally on all matters relating to instant replay for college football and will work with both the national and conference officiating coordinators to focus attention on replay consistency and training. Blandino was an NFL replay official and managed the replay operations from 2003-09. He left the NFL and created a consultancy business, Under the Hood, training and evaluating replay officials during its nascent years in the college game. He left that business after three years and returned to the NFL in 2013 as the head of officiating.
Blandino has also worked with Big Ten coordinator of officials and former NFL referee Bill Carollo on replay evaluation.
There were at least four candidates for this position, including NFL referee Terry McAulay, who recently had to give up his job with the American Athletic Conference as their supervisor, when the conference formed an officiating tandem with the Atlantic Coast Conference starting next season. However, one source said the officiating organization “did not want anybody in that position with current ties to the NFL.”
There is no word on if this position will conflict with Blandino’s duties as a co-rules analyst for Fox Sports, which signs indicate this will be a position he retains in the future.