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-   -   "Unqualified" Partner or official (https://forum.officiating.com/basketball/21137-unqualified-partner-official.html)

drinkeii Sat Jul 02, 2005 10:14pm

I worked a set of games a couple of weeks ago with a partner whose mechanics seemed a little off. I chalked this up to the fact that he had worked 11 games in a row the day before, and 5 before I got there that day.

Then, after about a game and a half, I noticed he didn't have a PIAA patch on his shirt. This, coupled with the wierd mechanics, prompted me to ask at halftime if he was a high school official. He said, no, I've been helping out the assignor for these camp games for 3 years. I'm a college player.

This raised some concerns. He made some obviously incorrect calls, based on not knowing the rules, and also tended to ignore a decent amount of contact that I was in no position to call. He also made a comment when I mentioned to one of the girls about lane restrictions on free throws, and she said "Oh, I didn't know that", he said "I didn't know that either". Not a comment you want coming from an official, stating that they didn't know the rules.

As a coach, I had a non-qualified official work with a very good official, several weeks ago on a game. It was extremely high contact, but little was called, and almost nothing by the non-high school official. He followed the ball, missing a large number of hip shoves on shots that several times resulted in my players landing awkwardly on the floor or falling to the floor, and one rolled ankle came out of that as well. He never looked off the ball, regardless of where he was on the floor. I complained a number of times, until he came over and told me I needed to be quiet or I would get thrown out. I resisted the impulse to say that he needed to T me up twice to throw me out (I doubt he could justify a flagrant for my complaints... no language was involved - I was just asking him to call some of the contact down low before someone else got hurt), especially since there was a minute and a half left in the game. I didn't find out until 2-3 days later that it wasn't even a HS official on the game, when his partner, who I've worked with several times, came over and apologised for his partner (the non-qualified official) and his actions during the game. I could tell the qualified official was trying, but it just didn't keep the game under control. This was a rec league game, BTW, HS JV Boys.

Any suggestions on how to handle either of these situations? Seems like it isn't such a great idea to have people that don't know what they're doing reffing HS Varsity and JV games, regardless of wether they're camp games or rec league or whatever.

truerookie Sat Jul 02, 2005 10:35pm

Drinkeii, You are going to have situations like that. The best things I can suggest is either do not place your teams in situations like that or ask the person who are running the tournament if they have their liability insurance pay up just in case someone gets hurt and their parents would like to start litigation due to unqualified personnel being involved. I am not against kids making money on the however, I do have a problem if they do not understand the rules. Because both of our A$$es are on the line if someone decides to start litigation. my two cents.

Jurassic Referee Sat Jul 02, 2005 10:38pm

Quote:

Originally posted by drinkeii

<font color = red>I complained a number of times, until he came over and told me I needed to be quiet or I would get thrown out</font>.

And as an official, you thought that a girl yelling "ball, ball, ball" was unsporting?

Physician, heal thyself.

Also known as "buh-bye, credibility".

You knew you had uncertified, untrained officials doing your game. Instead of doing the obvious and complaining to the person who was saving the bucks by hiring those non-officials in the first place, you'd rather put on a show from the bench.

Lah me.

drinkeii Sat Jul 02, 2005 10:53pm

Quote:

Originally posted by Jurassic Referee
Quote:

Originally posted by drinkeii

<font color = red>I complained a number of times, until he came over and told me I needed to be quiet or I would get thrown out</font>.

And as an official, you thought that a girl yelling "ball, ball, ball" was unsporting?


Physician, heal thyself.

Also known as "buh-bye, credibility".

You knew you had uncertified, untrained officials doing your game. Instead of doing the obvious and complaining to the person who was saving the bucks by hiring those non-officials in the first place, you'd rather put on a show from the bench.

Lah me.

Had you read the complete post, you would have realized that I did not know it was a non-certified official until 3 days later when his partner approached me and apologised. Had I known at the time, I would have gone to the person in charge and complained. I assumed, at the time, I was just dealing with an official who was not very good, not a non-official. As for unsportsmanlike, I don't feel as a coach asking the officials to make calls to keep the players safe is out of line, especially when I was not using any kind of inappropriate language or comments. That is all I was doing - complaining about a lack of extremely obvious calls by one official. I honestly wish I had a video tape to show what I mean by obvious - when a player's hips move 2 feet to one side because of a shove when they are in the air to take a shot, and this happens 20-30 times during a game, this is what I'm complaining about.

I have learned a lot being both a coach and an official. I have come to accept that officials have a huge variety of what they will accept as a foul or not, regardless of what the rules say. I have no problem accepting their judgement calls, as long as they are fair and unbiased and consistent. (and I don't mean "Call it both ways" - I hate that comment - I mean calling the same actions the same way from end to end and team to team for the duration of the game - some teams play more aggressively and foul more, generating more foul calls) The players can adjust, if the officials are consistent. If the officials are ignoring one kind of foul, and it is getting kids hurt, and it happens a number of times, this is where I feel I need to speak up. If I swear at an official, I would expect to be thrown out. If I question their lack of making calls when kids are getting hurt, I would hope that they would start to make calls to keep the players safe. They may not. That is their choice. But I draw the line at player safety. I have, on several occasions, been very close to ending a game by pulling the kids off the court before any more get hurt because of a game that the officials choose not to control. This was one of those times. The kids were extremely upset, and I was thinking about pulling them. But their sportsmanship (which in general, my players are very good about - they don't retaliate on the court) held out, and we finished the game, battered, but ok except for one rolled ankle.

So as I said, I assumed I had qualified officials - it wasn't until the next game when the second official approached me out of the blue and apologised, along with informing me that his partner was not a basketball official, and he knew from the start of the game that it was going to be bad because of that.

As for the ball ball ball thing - saying it, ok - screaming it at the top of your lungs 2 inches from another player's face? In any sport, except maybe football (and basketball apparently), that would be considered unsportsmanlike. In basketball, apparently it is not, as was evidenced by the discussion in the other thread.

JRutledge Sun Jul 03, 2005 12:14am

Welcome to the real world.
 
You said this happened 3 weeks ago. That means that it was not during the regular season or during a time when most "qualified" officials is doing other things. You are going to get officials that either are just plain available or do not care that much during this time of the year. I understand that coaches like your self want to win, I have never heard of a team that won anything important during the summer or off-season. Of course this is a great time to get some experience for player, but it is just the summer.

Where I live we have a lot of summer leagues, tournaments and shootouts going on. Many of the officials are not officials that would be working that caliber of games when the season starts. So what you explained in not very uncommon around here.

Peace

drinkeii Sun Jul 03, 2005 12:22am

Welcome to the real world? I'm not going for sarcasm here - I'm raising what I consider to be a reasonable concern.

I would think that facilities and assignors would take the time to make sure they have reasonably qualified officials for the level of games that they are giving them - otherwise, it would seem to open up a can of worms in terms of liability. I'm not likely to act upon this presumed liability, but parents of my players might be so inclined.

I am in an unusual situation as a coach. Our school doesn't have athletics - we are an academic magnet high school, and we farm our kids out to other local schools for HS sports. The team(s) I coach are kids from our school, playing to get better, playing for fun, and playing to learn to work together as a team. These are the three goals I give them when we start. Win or lose, I don't care, and I make a point of this to the kids - I don't care if we get beat by 40... if they played a good game, I'm happy with them, and so far, have found that they are happy with themselves once they get over the fact that they lost. I just want them to get better - many of my players go on to play HS sports for another school. I am, however, concerned for their safety, and do expect that whatever league we sign up to play in, that it will be a concern of the facility and assignor as well. I don't believe this is an unresonable expectation.

I have always considered, as a official, my first responsibility is to the safety of the players. Second, to the rules, and third, to game flow. Many officials seem more concerned with game flow than safety. This seems to be a rather callous and inappropriate attitude. I understand there are inherent risks in the game, but there are inherent risks in everything we do in life - when there are people in place to help keep the participants safe, that should be their primary concern.

[Edited by drinkeii on Jul 3rd, 2005 at 01:26 AM]

JRutledge Sun Jul 03, 2005 12:37am

Quote:

Originally posted by drinkeii
Welcome to the real world? I'm not going for sarcasm here - I'm raising what I consider to be a reasonable concern.

I would think that facilities and assignors would take the time to make sure they have reasonably qualified officials for the level of games that they are giving them - otherwise, it would seem to open up a can of worms in terms of liability. I'm not likely to act upon this presumed liability, but parents of my players might be so inclined.

Yes, welcome to the real world. I do not know about you, but basketball is not the only thing I do with my life. I have other things going on. I just got back from being out of town for a couple of days. I came back and I wanted to spend some time with my family. Officiating basketball is not my top priority at this time of year. I know for a fact I am not the only one that feels that way either. So yes, you will get officials that normally are not as experienced or talented. The assignor cannot make people do things they do want to do. I work baseball too and I do not make myself available during the summer. When I work summer baseball, I work often with people that are not as "qualified" or would not work the level of kids they are umpiring.


Quote:

Originally posted by drinkeii
I am in an unusual situation as a coach. Our school doesn't have athletics - we are an academic magnet high school, and we farm our kids out to other local schools for HS sports. The team(s) I coach are kids from our school, playing to get better, playing for fun, and playing to learn to work together as a team. These are the three goals I give them when we start. Win or lose, I don't care, and I make a point of this to the kids - I don't care if we get beat by 40... if they played a good game, I'm happy with them, and so far, have found that they are happy with themselves once they get over the fact that they lost. I just want them to get better - many of my players go on to play HS sports for another school. I am, however, concerned for their safety, and do expect that whatever league we sign up to play in, that it will be a concern of the facility and assignor as well. I don't believe this is an unresonable expectation.

I have always considered, as a official, my first responsibility is to the safety of the players. Second, to the rules, and third, to game flow. Many officials seem more concerned with game flow than safety. This seems to be a rather callous and inappropriate attitude. I understand there are inherent risks in the game, but there are inherent risks in everything we do in life - when there are people in place to help keep the participants safe, that should be their primary concern.

If you think safety is an issue because "qualified," then find some more money and pay enough money to make it worth the while of the "qualified" officials. Until then, you get what you pay for. If you do that, problem solved.

Peace

blindzebra Sun Jul 03, 2005 12:40am

The minute I read, "Players are getting hurt and nothing is getting called and it happens several times a game," all credibility is lost.

Zip, nada, zilch, zero.

drinkeii Sun Jul 03, 2005 12:42am


Quote:

Originally posted by drinkeii
I am in an unusual situation as a coach. Our school doesn't have athletics - we are an academic magnet high school, and we farm our kids out to other local schools for HS sports. The team(s) I coach are kids from our school, playing to get better, playing for fun, and playing to learn to work together as a team. These are the three goals I give them when we start. Win or lose, I don't care, and I make a point of this to the kids - I don't care if we get beat by 40... if they played a good game, I'm happy with them, and so far, have found that they are happy with themselves once they get over the fact that they lost. I just want them to get better - many of my players go on to play HS sports for another school. I am, however, concerned for their safety, and do expect that whatever league we sign up to play in, that it will be a concern of the facility and assignor as well. I don't believe this is an unresonable expectation.

I have always considered, as a official, my first responsibility is to the safety of the players. Second, to the rules, and third, to game flow. Many officials seem more concerned with game flow than safety. This seems to be a rather callous and inappropriate attitude. I understand there are inherent risks in the game, but there are inherent risks in everything we do in life - when there are people in place to help keep the participants safe, that should be their primary concern.

If you think safety is an issue because "qualified," then find some more money and pay enough money to make it worth the while of the "qualified" officials. Until then, you get what you pay for. If you do that, problem solved.

Peace [/B][/QUOTE]

Something got lost in the grammar here. The first part of the paragraph makes no sense. Besides, if an official is offered the game, and chooses to accept the game, I would hope that they are qualified, and if they do so, they should do their best, regardless of the pay. Many varsity officials officiate in these leagues - I'm concerned with the ones (even though it is only a few) who refuse to do their best because they're not being paid as much as for a varsity game. I don't care if they get a little sloppy on mechanics - I'm concerned when they choose not to make calls that keep the game under control and the players safe. Many comment that the game takes longer if they make calls - even knowing that it is a running clock. This makes no sense at all.

If the idea of pay was the only consideration, people better stop sending kids to Catholic schools - I made half of what I do now in the public schools. I didn't work half as hard. I didn't do half as much work as I do now. I did my best. I would hope that everyone would do so in whatever they choose to put their time and effort into. I officiate because I enjoy it - not for the money - that is just a side benefit.

JRutledge Sun Jul 03, 2005 01:05am

Quote:

Originally posted by drinkeii

Something got lost in the grammar here. The first part of the paragraph makes no sense. Besides, if an official is offered the game, and chooses to accept the game, I would hope that they are qualified, and if they do so, they should do their best, regardless of the pay.

The term "qualified" is a very subjective term. You might think someone is qualified to work a game and I might think they have no business working at all.

Quote:

Originally posted by drinkeii
Many varsity officials officiate in these leagues - I'm concerned with the ones (even though it is only a few) who refuse to do their best because they're not being paid as much as for a varsity game. I don't care if they get a little sloppy on mechanics - I'm concerned when they choose not to make calls that keep the game under control and the players safe. Many comment that the game takes longer if they make calls - even knowing that it is a running clock. This makes no sense at all.
Just because someone works varsity game, does not mean they are the best people for the games you are talking about. This is something you need to take up with the assignor, not anyone here. We cannot help you with your concern. All we can do is tell you why things are the way they are and it is up to you to take steps to change it.

Quote:

Originally posted by drinkeii
If the idea of pay was the only consideration, people better stop sending kids to Catholic schools - I made half of what I do now in the public schools. I didn't work half as hard. I didn't do half as much work as I do now. I did my best. I would hope that everyone would do so in whatever they choose to put their time and effort into. I officiate because I enjoy it - not for the money - that is just a side benefit.
One of the reasons people send their kids to private schools is not because of the effort the teachers give, because there is a prestige that school brings. Parents are not paying as much for just the education, but the perception of what an education from those schools give. Going to a Harvard or Yale does not automatically mean you are smarter. But when you graduate the perception of the person that went there is like night and day to other college institutions. It has been proven at both Harvard and Yale there has been a problem with grade inflation. Teachers would not give C, D or F grades, because there was this culture of not hurting anyone's feelings or ruining any students future. Just think of how many Presidents have graduated from both schools and were not the best students.

Now back to the officiating discussion. I give my best too, but I would never claim it was the same effort that I give in the regular season. I do not work many 4 and 5 games in the regular season as I do in the off-season.

Peace

drinkeii Sun Jul 03, 2005 01:14am

Quote:

Originally posted by JRutledge
Quote:

Originally posted by drinkeii

Something got lost in the grammar here. The first part of the paragraph makes no sense. Besides, if an official is offered the game, and chooses to accept the game, I would hope that they are qualified, and if they do so, they should do their best, regardless of the pay.

The term "qualified" is a very subjective term. You might think someone is qualified to work a game and I might think they have no business working at all.

(drinkeii's reply) I agree - but having passed the NFHS test is at least a minimum standard. Yes, it doesn't mean they're a good official - anyone with the ability to read should be able to pass the test, but at least that is a minimum.

Quote:

Originally posted by drinkeii
Many varsity officials officiate in these leagues - I'm concerned with the ones (even though it is only a few) who refuse to do their best because they're not being paid as much as for a varsity game. I don't care if they get a little sloppy on mechanics - I'm concerned when they choose not to make calls that keep the game under control and the players safe. Many comment that the game takes longer if they make calls - even knowing that it is a running clock. This makes no sense at all.
Just because someone works varsity game, does not mean they are the best people for the games you are talking about. This is something you need to take up with the assignor, not anyone here. We cannot help you with your concern. All we can do is tell you why things are the way they are and it is up to you to take steps to change it.

(drinkeii's reply) True. I was looking to see if people had suggestions on how to handle these situations. Discussing it with the assignor seems the way to go.

Quote:

Originally posted by drinkeii
If the idea of pay was the only consideration, people better stop sending kids to Catholic schools - I made half of what I do now in the public schools. I didn't work half as hard. I didn't do half as much work as I do now. I did my best. I would hope that everyone would do so in whatever they choose to put their time and effort into. I officiate because I enjoy it - not for the money - that is just a side benefit.
One of the reasons people send their kids to private schools is not because of the effort the teachers give, because there is a prestige that school brings. Parents are not paying as much for just the education, but the perception of what an education from those schools give. Going to a Harvard or Yale does not automatically mean you are smarter. But when you graduate the perception of the person that went there is like night and day to other college institutions. It has been proven at both Harvard and Yale there has been a problem with grade inflation. Teachers would not give C, D or F grades, because there was this culture of not hurting anyone's feelings or ruining any students future. Just think of how many Presidents have graduated from both schools and were not the best students.

Now back to the officiating discussion. I give my best too, but I would never claim it was the same effort that I give in the regular season. I do not work many 4 and 5 games in the regular season as I do in the off-season.

Peace

I'm not talking Harvard or Yale - I'm talking about the local catholic gradeschools or highschools. There is some prestige associated with one high school in our area, but a number of people coming out of there who haven't been able to read, but were sports stars, have raised some concerns, of course. I'm talking about situations where you're sending your kids to these schools, and expecting a good education - not expecting because the teachers are paid half of what public school teachers are that they will only give half the effort due to lack of pay.

I do agree that it is difficult to do 4-5 games the same way you would do one. I seem to be able to do 3 reasonably intense games without too much drop off in level of hustle, then it drops considerably. This is why I ask not to be given long stretches of games, and assignors have been accommodating in this regard. I'd rather walk out with a few less $$ and a feeling that I did a good job, than more money and feel like I didn't really earn it. And yes, I know, this isn't a common attitude... more money, less effort is the mantra of most people these days it seems.

JRutledge Sun Jul 03, 2005 01:40am

Quote:

Originally posted by drinkeii


I'm not talking Harvard or Yale - I'm talking about the local catholic gradeschools or highschools. There is some prestige associated with one high school in our area, but a number of people coming out of there who haven't been able to read, but were sports stars, have raised some concerns, of course. I'm talking about situations where you're sending your kids to these schools, and expecting a good education - not expecting because the teachers are paid half of what public school teachers are that they will only give half the effort due to lack of pay.

Private schools regardless of where they are tend to have prestige that most public schools do not. It does not matter if it is a Harvard or Yale or just a school like Brother Rice or a Driscoll High School in my area. These schools have a social, academic and financial prestige that comes with attending those schools. The prestige of the school is really important when you have many successful people that have attended those schools over the years. Parents are not just sending their kids to schools like that because they think the teachers are giving a great effort. It might be a factor for some, but I would bet there are many other factors at play.

Quote:

Originally posted by drinkeii
I do agree that it is difficult to do 4-5 games the same way you would do one. I seem to be able to do 3 reasonably intense games without too much drop off in level of hustle, then it drops considerably. This is why I ask not to be given long stretches of games, and assignors have been accommodating in this regard. I'd rather walk out with a few less $$ and a feeling that I did a good job, than more money and feel like I didn't really earn it. And yes, I know, this isn't a common attitude... more money, less effort is the mantra of most people these days it seems.
Well that sounds great. I am glad you want to take less money and summer league games are the same as regular season games in your mind. The reality it that attitude is the exception that I have seen. I know I do not share your attitude. I do the best for the situation that I am in. I do not treat summer league games the same way I do as regular season games. Many times I am just trying to survive. The effort I give is secondary. I have worked a few games in the past few weeks where there was no air conditioning in the gym and it was near 100 outside. I know I was not working my hardest in those situations. I was trying to make it through the games as much as what I called and what I did not call.

Peace

Jurassic Referee Sun Jul 03, 2005 05:54am

Quote:

Originally posted by drinkeii
Quote:

Originally posted by Jurassic Referee
Quote:

Originally posted by drinkeii

<font color = red>I complained a number of times, until he came over and told me I needed to be quiet or I would get thrown out</font>.

And as an official, you thought that a girl yelling "ball, ball, ball" was unsporting?


Physician, heal thyself.

Also known as "buh-bye, credibility".

You knew you had uncertified, untrained officials doing your game. Instead of doing the obvious and complaining to the person who was saving the bucks by hiring those non-officials in the first place, you'd rather put on a show from the bench.

Lah me.

Had you read the complete post, you would have realized that I did not know it was a non-certified official until 3 days later when his partner approached me and apologised. Had I known at the time, I would have gone to the person in charge and complained. I assumed, at the time, I was just dealing with an official who was not very good, not a non-official. As for unsportsmanlike, I don't feel as a coach asking the officials to make calls to keep the players safe is out of line, especially when I was not using any kind of inappropriate language or comments. That is all I was doing - <font color = red>complaining about a lack of extremely obvious calls by one official</font>.

I read the first complete post. I read this complete post too. I formed the identical conclusion from both.

Keep up the open and public complaining about the officials, coach. Don't come here and whine if you get your butt tossed though. It's what you deserve.

Lah me.

ChuckElias Sun Jul 03, 2005 07:55am

Quote:

Originally posted by drinkeii
Welcome to the real world? I'm not going for sarcasm here - I'm raising what I consider to be a reasonable concern.

I would think that facilities and assignors would take the time to make sure they have reasonably qualified officials for the level of games that they are giving them -

And that is where you are wrong, Dave. No sarcasm intended, but, yes. . . welcome to the real world. Organizers and even some assignors don't care who is on the court, as long as there are stripes out there. That's just the way it is. Nobody realizes how important good officiating is until they get really bad officiating.

Adam Sun Jul 03, 2005 09:03am

Another thing to think about that no one has mentioned specifically. A lot of the varsity level summer league games are worked by officials trying to move up to higher levels. My first varsity level games were during a summer league. You know what? I flopped.
I was just learning the concept of advantage-disadvantage, and I let way too much go. Coach complained a bit, but eventually talked to the administrator after a small shoving match between players, saying "tell them to quit calling this like a college game." I got the point and we tightened it up a bit, but I doubt that coach would like to have me back.


And, coach, I wouldn't even consider challinging the official with "you'd have to T me twice to get me out of here." Either he'll be wise enough to take that final comment as a flagrant T, or he'll give you one now, and one more when you stand up next time. It may be unfortunate, but that's how it goes sometimes.
Finally, remember it's explicitly against the rules to try and influence an official's calls; punishable by technical foul. We let a lot go on that, but the rule is there if he decides to enforce it.


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