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Old Sat Apr 23, 2011, 10:52am
HLin NC HLin NC is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 1,594
That's a hard one to answer as no two people's feet are the same. There are different models for grass and artificial surface and quite a few manufacturers. I suffered with plantar fasciitis and until I got custom inserts made, not much else mattered.

The old stand-by's, like the Spotbilt models, are gone. Reebok and New Balance seem to be the only major brands catering to the officials market and the NFL is switching back to Nike as a their major supplier so I guess we will see a change there in the next couple of years.

I'm always on the look-out for a good deal, checking the online suppliers, eBay, and shoe outlets when I travel. If I find a good deal, I'll buy them and put them away if need be.

The NFL Reebok models from a few years back tended to slip at the heel on me. I do have a pair of Thorpe Low models I bought last year off eBay, with a sneaker like tread, that I wear on turf most of the time now. I also have one pair of the discontinued adidas Pro Intimidate Low that I really like.

For grass, I either wear the New Balance 350's or in wet or muddy conditions, a pair of adidas Gridirons that I swapped a former SEC official for a pair of old Spotbilts. These are removable, cleated, football shoes

Overall, I think baseball trainers or turf shoes make the closest, functional shoe that a football official can purchase on the open market now. Its hard to find real leather at all and the baseball shoes in black tend to have the least amount of white that one is going to have to "color in" to be acceptable.

I have a pair of Mizuno Wave Trainer G3's that were solid black and all leather that I really liked. I think they are discontinued now. They were a little heavy and I soon learned that their particular rippled sole is a real #@$%& to clean out after a game on grass. I do know that the SoCon officials have been wearing a later model for their game shoe.

I've got one R that swears by his Nike hi-top Land Sharks.
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