Athletic director Oliver Luck said in a statement Thursday: "WVU adheres to the code of conduct and sportsmanship policies adopted by the Big East, which includes commenting on officiating. We have addressed this with Geno Smith, and he has been reprimanded for his comments."
West Virginia had a season-high 14 penalties against Cincinnati. Its season average going into that game was 5.5 penalties per contest. Afterward, Smith said, "All year we've been getting bad calls and today was one of the worst I can remember. It's getting out of hand."
As a follow up, he was asked whether the officials were making West Virginia pay for leaving the conference.
"I can't speak to that," he said. "When there's obvious things that happen, it's hard to overcome it as a team."
Coach Dana Holgorsen became aware of the comments Monday.
"His job is to ignore referees," Holgorsen said. "I said, 'Ignore them, don't talk to them.' He needs to listen and not do it. My job is to communicate with the referees. I do think the Big East Conference -- they do as good a job as anywhere I've been as far as communication. They do a great job of communicating. Whether we agree with the calls or not it's not our place. What's he going to do? Say sorry, or pick up the flag? Move on. Get past it. Our job to get past it."
Andrea Adelson is a national college football blogger for ESPN.com.