Late in the 49ers and Cowboys game, the 49ers barely made what appeared to be a first down, which would have probably allowed them to run out the clock. The play was reviewed, and the referee announced that he would re-spot the ball for measurement. Then he didn't something i've never seen before. Instead of spotting the ball north and south, he spotted the ball half-turned to the side. When then measured, this meant of course that the ball, being turned that way, was just short of the chain and the first down was negated, forcing the 49s to punt. Now is there a rule or procedure for spotting the ball that way instead of north and south? It looked to me like outright cheating by the ref, for the Cowboys to get the ball, but I knew it couldn't be cheating because the ref did it in front of everyone and no one said a word. So someone please excuse my ignorance and tell me why the ball was spotted that way for a crucial measurement.