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No refs? No game. Tennessee Tech learned the hard way.

No matter the game, no matter the teams involved, and no matter the amount of imbibing done during the tailgate, a general rule of thumb when it comes to sporting events is that the ref is biased against [insert your team’s name here].

I think we can all agree that having refs that are so clearly have no idea what they are doing is much better than the alternative -- having no refs at all.

That’s what happened to Tennessee Tech and Appalachian State last night

A large, noisy and enthusiastic crowd was in place Tuesday night for Tennessee Tech’s home opener, but the game had to be postponed when Appalachian State and the Southern Conference failed to provide game officials.

By contract, the Mountaineers were responsible for scheduling the officials since the contest was a return meeting from last year’s BracketBuster game in Boone, N.C. Tech and the OVC provided the officials for that game.

Tennessee Tech officials worked with the OVC office and the league’s director of officials to find an alternate crew but could not come up with any solutions. Now the two schools are looking at options for rescheduling the game but have not come up with any suitable dates.

Instead of watching the Golden Eagles play their home opener against a team that has already gone into Tulsa and knocked off the Golden Hurricane, Tech fans got free Pepsi and popcorn and a chance to watch people like this compete in such exciting events as dizzy bat races and t-shirt tosses.

I’m as big a fan of dizzy bat races and t-shirt tosses and free soda and popcorn as anyone, but come on. How does this happen? I understand the mistake on Appalachian State’s part. Everyone makes mistakes, and this looks like a classic case of miscommunication.

Why couldn’t Tennessee Tech officials, you know, send a courtesy email or text or facebook message?

“Hey guys! Can’t wait to play you on Tuesday. Don’t forget, refs are on ya’ll this year. Later!”

How simple is that? Its only 94 characters. It could have been a tweet.

Have we learned our lesson guys?