Personalities

Profiles and stories about officials and people close to officiating.

Personalities

Personalities
Profiles and stories about officials and people close to officiating.

Profile: NFL Referee Clete Blakeman

NFL referee Clete Blakeman lights up the room and the field. That’s what his crewmates say about him. Tripp Sutter, a Big Ten official,...

Marc Of Distinction

He used to sit anonymously in the Silverado High School bleachers in Las Vegas during  the mid-2000s, a bookish, kind man who could easily...

Roger Ayers: Trials By Fire

With flames raging beyond a door he emotionally prepared to enter with his partner, Roger Ayers tightened his hands around the fire hose that was about to be activated...

Defining the “It” Factor

Rules knowledge, mechanics and making the right calls are important. Missing any of those elements can break your career, but having them won’t make...

Michael Stephens: His “Rhode” Through Providence

When you talk to people who know Michael Stephens well, they’ll tell you he learned at the feet of the masters — from big-time Division I college basketball officials...

Five Decades of Pam Young

When the U.S. Department of Education leveled the playing field for males and females in 1972 by ratifying Title IX, the agency did more than open doors and...

Ten Basketball Officials, One Family

I t's ten basketball officials, one family as Cal Von Rueden, 15, recently joined the ranks of this basketball officiating dynasty in the greater Milwaukee...

How Bill Vinovich Fought to Return to the NFL After Massive Heart Trauma

Embed from Getty Imageswindow.gie=window.gie||function(c){(gie.q=gie.q||).push(c)};gie(function(){gie.widgets.load({id:'_3R9U9JESMlCPudgn9GJQg',sig:'lMDPw18x2oTd0bYLWK_h11HfNn8osEbPQmSIYuL-qFM=',w:'594px',h:'396px',items:'1179861753',caption: true ,tld:'com',is360: false })}); HEART OF THE MATTER By Peter Jackel Shawna Vinovich sensed a finality in her father’s voice as she overheard snippets of...

Long Journey from Minors to MLB World Series

As their school bus approached their home on Holman Avenue that November morning in 1986, Chris Guccione and little brother Steven were distracted by...

Muscles and Details Lead to Mike Defee’s Mastery

We'll waste no time addressing Mike Defee’s Popeye-the-Sailor-style arms in an effort to satisfy one of the rages on social media these days. Yes, perhaps...

Solid Stance: Gerry Davis Profile

The honor hardly could be more fitting. OK, perhaps having a behind-the-plate stance named after you — as Gerry Davis does — isn’t technically an...

FIFA Referee Mark Geiger

By his own proud admission, the man is a nerd. Conjure images of that wisp of a kid you remember from high school who...

Hall of Famer June Courteau has Left an Amazing Mark on Women’s Basketball Officiating

A well-read woman with an insatiable desire to cram yet more knowledge into her mind was sitting poolside at an Aruba timeshare dwelling in the summer of 2015. Simply reading doesn’t...

“Reggie The Ref” Is More Than Just a Nickname

Embed from Getty Images Nicknames are part of sports. “Hammerin’ Hank.” “The Greek Freak.” “A-Rod.” Sports officials go the same route. “Reggie the Ref.” Catchy nickname,...

6 Transcendent Moments for Sports Officials

For some of us, officiating is a vocation, for others it is an avocation. For almost all of us, however, it is a passion that offers feelings of...

Bobby Dibler’s Continuing Life Work

A boy with hoop dreams, the scope of which he could never have comprehended would one day come to fruition during those halcyon days...

Crystal Hogan is Right At Home in Men’s D-I College Basketball

Ask Crystal Hogan to discuss her nearly two-decade journey as a basketball official, and she’ll rattle off a long list of names, locations and...

Going to War with Joe Crawford

NBA fans’ character sketch of Joe Crawford has been drawn in indelible ink. They long ago dismissed him as that referee with a centimeter...

Officiating is a Family Affair

Nestled between the San Diego Bay and the scenic splendor of the coastal mountain foothills in Southern California are the sprawling sun-kissed expanses of...
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Frank DeFord, Longtime Supporter of Sports Officials, Dies At 78

We at Referee magazine and the National Association of Sports Officials are much saddened by the passing of Frank DeFord. Frank received accolades, honors...

John Parry Mixes Business and Humor

It's 2007, and rookie NFL referee John Parry is tossing the coin for a game pitting the undefeated New England Patriots against the undefeated...

Tom O’Neill’s Long Haul

I t’s difficult for an official working a national championship game to avoid the spotlight. But during the opening minutes of the 1997 NCAA men’s...

5 Minutes with Karen Preato

Hometown: Greensboro, N.C. Experience: Started officiating at the college level in 1998 and entered the D-I ranks in 2003. Currently works in the Atlantic 10, Atlantic...

NCAA Referee Keith Kimble Keeps It All In Perspective

Sure, basketball is important to NCAA men’s referee Keith Kimble. But that’s only 20 percent. It’s the other 80 percent of his life that...

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