Football

Football

Wing Officials Are Coach Conduits For Crew

Wing officials face the constant challenge of the game in front of them and having to communicate with coaches who are behind them. Control of the sideline is important...

Flying Flag

On Dec. 19, 1999, Jeff Triplette — in his first year as an NFL referee — was working a game in Cleveland when he...

Onfield Meetings – Short, Simple & Complete

Much has been written and said about the importance of perception in officiating. Image is everything, as the saying goes and that is true not only of...

Video Tips for Working as the Referee with Legendary White Hat Jerry Markbreit

Jerry Markbreit is one of the most well known and respected sports officials in the world. Not just in the football community but across...

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...

It’s a Foul Now or Later (But Not Never)

You observe movement in either line just as the ball is snapped. You know it is a foul, but do you prevent the play...
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...

The Game Of The Century – Notre Dame vs. Michigan State 1966

In a game that featured number one against number two — Notre Dame vs. Michigan State — college football fans were highly anticipating which...

Hey Ref! Doncha Know The Rules?

I t’s a question all officials hear at some point in their careers. Unfortunately, fans yelling it from the stands are usually unaware the game...

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...

Eyes Off the Ball

More than one clinician has joked about officials who should have to buy a ticket to officiate a game because they mostly watch the...

What Happens When the Neutral Zone Expands?

The neutral zone is one of the basic tenets of a football game. In practical terms it’s the space between the offensive and defensive...

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...

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...

A Little Officiating Magic

The Magician’s Oath is to never reveal the secrets of magic to non-magicians. Nonetheless, there are various “tricks” officials can use to call a game properly. Magic can...

The Best Games Include These Three Elements

Safe, fair and fun.That phrase — that triangle, if you will — contains the ingredients to the best game you’ll ever have. And there...

Be A Penalty Enforcer

Being an effective penalty enforcer is vitally important, but something officials tend to neglect. Contrary to what some officials seem to think, it is not only a referee-umpire...

Ditch the Dinosaur Mechanics

The semifinal game was sold out. Although the visitors were seeded lower, their playoff performance made them the favorite. The home team held its...

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...

Literally Lateral

When San Antonio Trinity University used 15 backward passes to score the winning touchdown on the last play of an October 2008 game against...

Foul Trumps Other Fouls

Several fouls are predicated on the hypothesis that a legal forward pass is or was in progress. As a result, several actions that are...

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...

Breaking a Ball-Hawking Habit

The desire to rubberneck, gawk, stare and gape is often an involuntary behavior. Humans are innately curious and are often attracted to the most...

Calm on Broken Plays

Coaches, players and fans are allowed to panic when a play goes awry. Officials, on the other hand, must react to broken plays as if they're routine...

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