Football

Football

It’s OK to pick up a flag or put one down late

Back in the day there were two commonly accepted officiating axioms: Don’t pick up a flag once it’s put down and don’t put one down late. The idea...

When in Doubt, Solved

Several years ago rulemakers began putting “when in question” guidelines in the rulebook. They say that in certain cases, if a ruling could go either way, it should...

Manipulation Or Management?

One of the attributes that separates the best referees from their good counterparts is the ability to manage a game. Good game management includes...

Judgment Necessary at Line of Scrimmage 

Judgments are a large part of football officiating. All rules require some degree of judgment. Perhaps the simplest application is determining whether a team has too many players on...

The 5 D’s Of Football Success

Here's a list of qualities starting with D from Steve Shaw, CCA National Coordinator of Football Officials, that, if employed, can help any official...

3 Fouls We Miscall the Most

In most seasons, false starts are the most frequently occurring fouls and arguably the foul that requires the second least amount of judgment (calling...
deep official back judge important

Deep Official A Key Crew Member

Back judges are often undervalued in a crew of five. Perhaps that stems from the many prep teams that run the ball much more often than pass...

When to Throw Flags, When Not to (and When to Pick ’em Up) 

The idea of a flag being waved off brings to mind an overbearing referee trumping the decision of a younger crewmate. That has happened on occasion but picking...

When a Lone Ranger Isn’t a ‘Good Guy’

Even if you are too young to have watched the TV show, you should be familiar with the Lone Ranger, a fictional character that...
ball-watching football official

Ball-Watching Afflicts Veterans and Newer Officials Alike

Two huge mistakes that officials can make are ball-watching and officiating air. The former means watching the runner to the exclusion of what’s happening around him. The latter means focusing...

3 “When In Doubt” Judgment Guidelines

According to Webster, judgment is the ability to make a decision. An official’s judgment calls will be questioned more often than his or her...

Focus on Free Kicks

You are the referee for tonight’s game. You have completed the pregame conference with your crew, met with the head coaches and conducted the coin toss. Now you hustle...

More Than a Dozen Intentional Acts Are Possible 

When the word “intentional” is mentioned, the first thing that springs to the mind of most football officials is intentional grounding. However, intent plays a role in many more...

Plays Not Seen Often Challenge Officials

No one has ever attempted to rank fouls in the order of the difficulty in calling them. However, it’s clear there is pecking order....

Movement Only One Part of the Job for Umpires 

It takes a great deal of fortitude to venture into the jumble of flailing arms and bodies where only linebackers dare to tread. But in addition to being...

Poor Signals Lose Time

By Gerry Grunska Recently I witnessed a victory that was essentially accomplished through timing errors by the officials. The process went like this. Time was running out for team...

Football Crew Success Depends on Working Together

Teamwork can be traced back to the Neanderthal age. It has been used to find food, build shelter, drive away enemies and protect the...

How to Handle a New Crew Member

If you’re used to working on a crew with the same people from week to week, you know that you can quickly reach a...

Don’t Talk To My Kids!

"Don't Talk To My Kids!" Ever heard that shouted from the sideline? Coaches don’t want officials coaching their players. They do want officials to help their...

Official/Player Communication Influences Conduct

Trying to manage a football game would be nearly impossible without effective and pointed communication. Although managing players is primarily the responsibility of the coaching staff, officials can facilitate the...

4 Questions a Referee Never Wants to Ask

There are four questions that no referee wants to ask when a foul has been called. That’s because they should have been asked and answered by the calling...
coach communication

Limits To Coach Communication

24Communication between officials and coaches is extremely important and is an essential element of a properly officiated game. Most coaches identify good communication as...

Safety Glasses

The opening kickoff sails over the goalline. The ball is muffed in flight by the receiver and rolls away. The ball is recovered and...

Muff May Affect Protection

A fair catch is, in effect, a trade. The receiver gives up his right to advance in exchange for freedom from contact by the opponent....

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