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Old Tue Oct 03, 2006, 01:24pm
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Comfort Level

As our career as an official progresses we all develop a comfort level with the level of games we work. But as we move up the ladder from middle school/junior high to lower level HS to HS varsity to JUCO and for a select few D1 we have our comfort level stretched as we enter that next level. The players are quicker, more athletic, coaches more vocal and lets not forget about those wonderful fans. Other than just working the games what are the tricks of the trade someone can use when working games at the next level in order to accelerate getting comfortable at the level. For me, this last weekend work a HS varsity boys game in which I never felt comfortable. Two of the top teams in the area, a little barking from the coaches which I was able to deal with, but I never felt comfortable on the court even though during the summer worked 50+ Varsity Boys games. My partner was one of our top officials who said I fine and said doing a game like this will help me become comfortable working these type of games during the season. I tried to stay focused, good mechanics and good positioning, especially being active as T. Other suggestions from the masses will be appreciated.
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Old Tue Oct 03, 2006, 02:22pm
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One thing I have found even though you may have the call totally wrong which you don't, you have to be a good sales ref. Sell the call. If you come across with comfort, not everyone is going to like your call, but doing a great job of selling the call will not raise any doubt. That was drilled into my head by my mentor who is ACC/Big East and CAA referee. Be confident with your call. I'm sure the rest of the Veterans on this thread may or may not agree but will give you great tips.
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Old Tue Oct 03, 2006, 02:41pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by refhoops
...Other than just working the games...
Well, I'm not sure there is another good short-cut. It's been true since I started, the more I work at a certain level, the more comfortable I've become. And, I don't think it's necessarily backwards-compatable either. A few years ago I was asked to work a grade school playoff game because a friend of mine had to get off the game. I hadn't worked a grade school game in over 5 years before that, and I found myself more nervous before that game than before a big HS rivalry game. It was just a situation I hadn't been in in a while, so I wasn't real comfortable. I'm also a little more nervous about a game in a gym or school I've never been at, compared to a location I've been at a couple of times before. The less things are unfamiliar, the more comfortable I am.
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Old Tue Oct 03, 2006, 03:46pm
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There are two things I have done consistently, again and again, that have helped me a lot.

1) Just working games isn't enough. You have to talk to someone about them so your mistakes can become lessons. Camp is a great place for this, but there are other situations you can create for yourself. you might even pay someone to come and watch, and give advice, and discuss questions about things that happen. The advantage of this system is that you are paying, so if you want to argue, they have to answer your objections. I know you pay at camp too, but somehow it just doesn't work there. Another situation you can make for yourself is at a tournament where there are a whole bunch of refs on site, and you can banter and cajole someone to give suggestions, or to answer quetsions.

2) The other thing you can do to move up and be comfortable more quickly is to watch a lot of games at the level you want to move up to. And then talk to someone about what you're seeing. You also have to be certain that the refs you're watching are good at it, so you can learn what to do, rather than what not to do. As you're watching, you need to assume they are always right, and then when you have a game, you can sort of put yourself into the "Lea-mode" (that's how I think of it for myself, since my role model is named Lea) or whoever, and try to act like that person.
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Old Tue Oct 03, 2006, 03:58pm
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Let's make sure we differentiate (for Jurassic, that big word means to see a difference between ) being comfortable and being complacent...being comfortable is just a matter of "acting like you've been there before" which comes with having been there before...as others have said - work more games at that level. But don't get complacent - don't ever get so comfortable at any level that you take it for granted...speaking from personal experience - that is NOT a good thing.
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Old Tue Oct 03, 2006, 04:02pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rockyroad
Let's make sure we differentiate (for Jurassic, that big word means to see a difference between ) being comfortable and being complacent...being comfortable is just a matter of "acting like you've been there before" which comes with having been there before...as others have said - work more games at that level. But don't get complacent - don't ever get so comfortable at any level that you take it for granted...speaking from personal experience - that is NOT a good thing.
Agreed. I think it's probably safe to say that getting complacent leads to a lot of discomfort!
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Old Tue Oct 03, 2006, 04:02pm
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Originally Posted by rockyroad
But don't get complacent - don't ever get so comfortable at any level that you take it for granted...speaking from personal experience - that is NOT a good thing.
Amen.
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Old Tue Oct 03, 2006, 04:06pm
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Originally Posted by rockyroad
Let's make sure we differentiate (for Jurassic, that big word means to see a difference between )
Oh, thank Goodness that's what it means. I was worried about you going blind....again.

Carry on differentiating. I won't tell anyone.
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Old Tue Oct 03, 2006, 04:09pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jurassic Referee
Oh, thank Goodness that's what it means. I was worried about you going blind....again.

Carry on differentiating. I won't tell anyone.
Hhmmmmm....

Interesting combination of perky, sassy AND crotchety and growl-ly. Also indications that you've never differentiated?? Not that I"m asking...
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Old Tue Oct 03, 2006, 04:15pm
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Originally Posted by rainmaker
Hhmmmmm....

Interesting combination of perky, sassy AND crotchety and growl-ly. Also indications that you've never differentiated?? Not that I"m asking...
WOW!! Juulie comes in big! Talk about piling on the defenseless old geezer... way to go Juules! That retreat was good for you!!!
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Old Tue Oct 03, 2006, 04:17pm
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Originally Posted by rockyroad
WOW!! Juulie comes in big! Talk about piling on the defenseless old geezer... way to go Juules! That retreat was good for you!!!

You have no idea.....
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Old Tue Oct 03, 2006, 04:25pm
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Originally Posted by rainmaker
You have no idea.....
Umm...any pictures? Videos?

I'd even settle for court-artist drawings.
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Old Tue Oct 03, 2006, 04:29pm
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Originally Posted by M&M Guy
Umm...any pictures? Videos?

I'd even settle for court-artist drawings.

I already told you --- old ladies in pedal pushers. And there was no need for court-artists.
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Old Tue Oct 03, 2006, 04:59pm
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Originally Posted by REFVA
my mentor who is ACC/Big East and CAA referee.

Is it Roger or Mike?
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Old Tue Oct 03, 2006, 05:55pm
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Originally Posted by rainmaker
Also indications that you've never differentiated??
Nope, not me! No! Never! Nuh-huh! Nosir! Not!

Weeeeell, maybe I took a chance with one eye. Once.
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