Straight Talk | IHSA officiating scandal?



Basketball fans, coaches and others are still talking about the Metamora loss to Chicago Marian in the 3A super sectional IHSA game held on the campus of Northern Illinois. It was a closely fought game officiated by Tom Fuller, Tariq P. Lucas and Mark Jordan. Most, if not all, critics of the officiating blame Jordan. Not once, but twice, Jordan overruled three point baskets made by Metamora players and called by Tom Fuller. Jordan said the player each time was over the high school three point line. Numerous video pictures, now posted on the Internet, clearly show Jordan was wrong. Dead wrong. Not even close on the last one made by Metamora with only six seconds remaining in the game. As a matter of fact, the video shows the Metamora player was even behind the college three point line. It put Metamora ahead with less than six seconds remaining. The game should have been over because Metamora had three fouls to give and could’ve fouled opponent players running out the clock.

What angered the fans, obviously, was the position of Jordan on the three point shots, especially the last one. Fuller was much closer and had the better and correct view. Jordan was not. However, Jordan ran to the scorekeeper before conferring with Fuller on the call, telling him to count only two points. Then he apparently demanded Fuller change his call. Fuller did. Later, in Peoria at the state high school tournament, Fuller told a Metamora official he should not have given in to Jordan. Fuller’s call was correct.

Sam Knox is the IHSA official who assigns referees. He “rewarded” Jordan with games at this year’s state tournament in Peoria. Craig Anderson, executive director of the Illinois High School Association, needs to review video of the game and the behavior of Mark Jordan. He owes Metamora and basketball fans that much in the interest of fair play.

Quest questions

Quest High School’s basketball team had quite a year. The team advanced almost to the state tournament losing in overtime to the school that eventually was crowned state champion.

Quest coach Michael ”Fergie” Jenkins was “rewarded” with a pink slip. He was fired without warning via an email by Dr. Nicole Wood, principal of the school. The email gave him no reason but said the dismissal was immediate. By the way, we reported this story exclusively on our morning show.

What a celebration!

St. Patrick’s Day has come and gone. As usual, it was a smashing success with another terrific parade attended by thousands, far larger than any Peoria parade, including the arrival of Santa. Organizers say there were 150 entries.

“Breakfast with Roger and Friends” once again celebrated with Irish leaders Jimmy Spears, West Peoria Mayor Jim Dillon and one of the founders of the parade, Ed Dwyer. Ed reminded us he’s the sole survivor of that small group who started St. Patrick’s Society leading to the parade. We also again talked by phone with a couple of our friends in Clonmel, Peoria’s sister city in Ireland.

Sad notes

We lost two special people. Former Peoria mayor and city councilman Bob Lehnhausen passed away at the age of 98. He would not agree with me, but he was a World War II hero. Bob flew B-17 and B-24 bombing missions over Europe. With urging, he talked about his service and the dangers he experienced on our program Memorial Day, July Fourth and Veterans Day. Few people know he had to ditch his B-17 in the Mediterranean Sea after a bombing mission. He was thrown through the cockpit window on impact, knocked unconscious but awakened in the water. He lost three crew members. A life raft popped out with a rope line attached to the sinking plane. The line was supposed to release from the plane. It didn’t. Lehnhausen managed to break the rope seconds before the plane sank by chewing it in half. He and surviving members were able to climb on the raft. Bob Lehnhausen. A hero.

Then there’s former Creve Coeur police chief Jerry Daughters. Jerry was 85 when he died, too suddenly for me. We frequently had breakfast. That didn’t make him famous. His 35 years in law enforcement did. He was chief for 25 of those years. During that time, he established Creve Coeur Junior Police, an organization for young people. It was similar to Boy Scouts, teaching citizenship, respect for others and character development. Jerry had high respect for the military and was catalyst for the annual Dec. 7 memorial service that honored all veterans, especially those who died in the bombing of Pearl Harbor.


A special and public note of congratulations to our son, Dr. R. Dan Monroe, associate professor and chair of the department of history and political science at Millikin University in Decatur. Dan was elected to the Board of Directors of the Abraham Lincoln Association. The purpose of the association is to observe each anniversary of the birth of Abraham Lincoln, to preserve and make more accessible the landmarks associated with his life and actively to encourage, promote and aid the collection and dissemination of authentic information of all phases of his life.

Quote of the month

“No man can get rich in politics unless he’s a crook. It cannot be done.” — Harry S. Truman

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