Sport-Specific Articles

Sport-Specific Articles
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Police the Pile

How does the runner usually react when he’s been tackled? The norm in college and pro football is that runners lay patiently after they...

Double Check Score After Unusual Situation

Communication between the referees and the scoring crew is crucial to ensure accuracy of the score and the information recorded on the scoresheet. Double...

First Base Barricade

Obstruction is a common occurrence in softball. It happens most often at home plate as catchers try to prevent a runner from scoring. However,...

Seeing Is Believing

No matter what umpiring mechanics are being used in a particular game — whether it’s a single umpire working a youth baseball game or...

Zeroed In

One of the biggest challenges in officiating is how to be completely locked in mentally for the entire game. It is of upmost importance...

Slot Machine

The most important job in a game, and often the most difficult, is calling an accurate strike zone. In order to be accurate, you...

Leap Into the New Year

At its recent annual council meeting in Oklahoma City, USA Softball voted to adopt several new rule changes for the 2022 season. The most...

No Happy Accidents

Last summer, I was working the bases as part of a two-person crew when it became apparent the defensive team was thinking about making...

All Eyes Are On You

There are close plays all over a baseball field and in every game. Half-steppers at first base. Fingertips on stolen base attempts. Pitches at...

Travel vs. Fumble — Which is It?

There are times when a player who has control of the ball unintentionally drops it from his or her hands — a fumble —...

Career Suicide Can Be a Killer

Officiating is unlike many endeavors in that hard work, diligent study and the right temperament are not guarantees to success. Conversely, there are several...

Get in the Groove with Your Partner

There is nothing like throwing a perfect game as a pitcher or calling the perfect game as a referee. Just like in baseball and...

Chasing Higher-Level Games

When I was eight years old, my cousin and I always looked forward to the circus coming to town. The troupe would have a...

Coordination, Communication Key to Measurements

One of the oldest sports clichés is that football is “a game of inches.” When a measurement is involved, it might be a fraction...

Touchline Tackle

There is a lot happening in this play requiring the referee and near assistant referee to work together. The location on the field near...

Catcher You Later

By Jon Bible A long-standing topic of debate in baseball circles is how we should relate to catchers. There are several schools of thought. I’ve heard...

Set the Table

For years, we’ve never really acknowledged the importance of the scorer as an integral part of a volleyball officiating crew. It seems there has...

How to Keep Your Head From Spinning

The athletic spin move is often one that players, coaches and fans love to see during a game and also one that makes officials...

Before The Flag

No one likes to see a lot of flags thrown. They interrupt the flow of the game and can seem to make it drag...

Before, During or After the Play When to Throw the Flag Determined by Foul...

All team A players are set before a snap. Then two backs go in motion. Both are still moving just before it appears the...

Gripes Coming From Winning Team?

If you were officiating a soccer match and the score got to 6-0, you might expect a little dissent, right? But would you expect it from the winning...

5 Tips for the Tag Play at the Plate

Atag play at the plate is among the most exciting plays in softball. The decision the umpire renders on a close play at home...

Ballhandling Makes Your Crew Look Sharp

It was the championship game for the local semi-pro league with a crew of six officials. A pass was intercepted and the down ended...

How to Keep Calm During Rundowns

Rundowns are usually the result of a runner being too aggressive. Depending on the level of play, players may go into panic mode. Umpires...

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