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Old Mon Aug 18, 2008, 10:50am
With_Two_Flakes With_Two_Flakes is offline
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: Great Britain
Posts: 244
Found this on the UniWatch blog. Does this mean the linesman never moved?
This photo looks like it is from the 1920's or 1930's. A few years ago I obtained a reprint of a 1930's book called Football Officiating by E. C. Krieger via some friends in Ohio (Jack Winter, Gary Arthur). Krieger was a Big Ten official and Secretary of the Rules Committee 1945-47. If you struggle with PSK rules, blame him!

The book includes a section about the Linesman's assistants (chain crew) and how to instruct them not to move till instructed to do so. It then goes on to talk about the Linesman's stick (the item in the photo that HL in NC posted)......

"Why it is necessary for the Linesman to encumber himself with a useless piece of equipment such as a stick carried on the field is quite beyond my understanding. With the necessary points marked at all times on the sideline and the Linesman stationed at the point of the next down on every down, the only point to the entire procedure is the sharp point of the stick, this point being more in the nature of a menace to the safety of players than a help to officiating."

This was illustrated with photos of a Linesman following a running play carrying his stick akin to a matador looking to stab a bull.

My understanding is that the Lineman stuck the stick into the turf to hold the forward progress spot enabling him to relay in a ball, physically bring up the box man, etc. They clearly did not have the same grasp of Health and Safety legislation back then as we do today. It goes on to suggest that the only use for the stick was a weapon to discipline unruly players or for the Linesman's self protection.

The final word by E C Krieger about the stick was this...
"If the Linesman feels he needs protection, a small automatic is more effective and much easier to carry."
Sorry Death, you lose.... It was Professor Plum!
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