I know most fans hate refs and I know few NFL fans that have a favorite one. Well guess what? I do! Mike Carey is the best ref out of any sport I have ever seen and I will explain why in a minute.
Back in high school I used to do the book for the women's basketball team. It was a fun and intense job. The reason is was intense was because some of the refs sucked. When a team member would foul they would shout out the number across the gym. You could never hear them and it would always be an issue. Every once and a while we would get a good ref who put up his fingers to indicate who made the foul. Since that time I have made it my life study to search for the perfect official and Mike Carey is him.
There are several reasons that Mr. Carey is so good. The first is that he has complete control of the game. Sometimes you are watching the TV and the officials seem confused and unsure of what to call. Not Carey. He always knows what's going on. He controls the teams, the coaches, and the other officials. His greatest asset is that he is a great communicator. Anytime there is a penalty, he clearly explains to the audience what happened. I find it hard to get angry when he makes a call against the Saints.
Keep on rocking Mike.
Check out his Wikipedia Entry.