Thread: 5th Quarter
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Old Wed Jan 23, 2002, 05:40am
drinkeii drinkeii is offline
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I have a question - I recently began doing middle school level games, and many of them ask the officials to do a 5th quarter. I understand the concept - let the kids play who weren't good enough to play in the real game (I won't go any further into my disgust of middle school sports' "Win at any cost" philosophy, when you're supposed to be teaching the kids how to play and half the bench sits for most if not all of the game - ok, enough venting )... but what I have a problem with is the level of rule enforcement at this point. I have only worked a few games that did this, but I was told by one coach not to report fouls, and by the other to call and report them so he knew which players were fouling on his team. I was told by my partner in both cases, "Let most stuff go". My problem is the idea of what do you let go? Some people have told me to let everything go but the obvious fouls and violations - well, I don't normally call the non-obvious ones! If I see someone travel, it stands out to me as obvious. If I see someone hit another player and affect their shot, again, obvious. But it would seem that I am calling more than I am supposed to, from talking to my partner after the game about this 5th quarter.

I guess I'm not sure how the kids will learn if they do finally get some playing time, but they are allowed to do whatever they want (ok, maybe not whatever, but for example, travel if it was ONLY 2-3 steps, or push another player if it wasn't THAT hard) and not be told, by calling fouls, that what they did was wrong. I mean, I talk to the players too, and explain what it is they are doing wrong, but if they don't want fouls called, or violations, then why not just have the coaches ref the game - why have us there to not call the rules we are supposed to?

I ran into this issue with my IM league - the kids said that the refs were calling too much - I asked them which rules we should ignore, and after discussing it, they coulnd't come up with any specific ones - they just want less calls (which to me is more fouling).

Thanks for any advice on this matter - again, I don't have any problem with doing these 5th quarters... it's not the money that is getting me there anyway - I'm doing it because I enjoy it - I just have trouble when all the black and white rules become fuzzy.
David A. Rinke II
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