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Old Mon Dec 15, 2008, 04:08pm
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dealing with coaches

I'm a second year official that is doing mid school and high school JV games.I am interested in hearing how the experienced guys handle the high school coaches, when they complain.

some people I work with say to never talk to coach and some say you need to talk but not discuss plays. Others..well they think you just T them up if they jabber too much.

what do all of you say????
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Old Mon Dec 15, 2008, 04:15pm
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First of all, welcome to the forum...We have a few threads already on this. Here is one of them:

Communications with Coaches

I believe the first and foremost way to deal with coaches is not to wait until something bad happens. Introduce yourself before the game and build a little bit of creditability before the game even starts. Be professional, respectful, and personable. Using proper mechanics goes a long way with building confidence with the coach. There are many examples in that thread that will be very helpful (ie post #8). Once again, welcome

-Josh
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Old Mon Dec 15, 2008, 04:17pm
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You need to do what fits your personality and the situation. There's no one answer.
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Old Mon Dec 15, 2008, 04:38pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bob jenkins View Post
You need to do what fits your personality and the situation. There's no one answer.
This is true. What works with one coach may not work with another. You have to try some things out and see what happens. Make some mental notes and use things that work better.

Ignoring coaches is rarely the best answer.
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Old Mon Dec 15, 2008, 04:51pm
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General rule: Answer questions and ignore commentary. This "rule" only works about 90% of the time, though.
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Old Mon Dec 15, 2008, 05:09pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stripes View Post
This is true. What works with one coach may not work with another. You have to try some things out and see what happens. Make some mental notes and use things that work better.

Ignoring coaches is rarely the best answer.
Solid advice, answer their questions - susinctly stick to the rule, stick to what you saw - do not wing it, you will eventually say something wrong and you will pay for it.

Do not get in a running conversation with a coach, the less said the less trouble you can get yourself into. Innocent remarks can be taken out of context and then you have a problem.

Do not innitiate conversations with Coaches, believe me if they want to hear from you, they will let you know.
Work on your posture so that you apear open and receptive when you are talking to them. (example - having your arms crossed in front of you give a closed off impression as though you are not listening or willing to take in information).

RELAX!
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Old Mon Dec 15, 2008, 05:13pm
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One thing I'm trying very hard NOT do this year is get defensive when a coach complains. I'll listen, and tell them what I saw. At some point, it may come down to "Coach, on this one, we may have to agree to disagree."

I find some of the "canned" phrases work very well: "Coach, I'm looking for that at both ends" "Coach, I think I had a pretty good angle on that call." "Coach, you may be right. I'll work harder to get a better look at it next time."

I find a lot of times they just want to vent, and if you can keep your cool, it prevents the discussion from escalating.

But you have to tailor it to your disposition. It has taken me a long time to NOT get defensive, and feel comfortable communicating with coaches.

But I have found "don't ignore them" is very good advice.
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Old Mon Dec 15, 2008, 05:19pm
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My first game of the season, I'm T with the visitor's HC in my pocket, first half. Home's pg is in the midst of a crowd and "probably" double dribbles. I didn't have a clear view due to the crowd.

Coach: "She double dribbled. That was a...."
Me: "I missed it."
Coach, smiling: "Okay."

It helped he was winning handily.
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Old Mon Dec 15, 2008, 05:28pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Snaqwells View Post
My first game of the season, I'm T with the visitor's HC in my pocket, first half. Home's pg is in the midst of a crowd and "probably" double dribbles. I didn't have a clear view due to the crowd.

Coach: "She double dribbled. That was a...."
Me: "I missed it."
Coach, smiling: "Okay."
I like this. Lets the coach know that you have no illusions of your own infallibility. I have a sign language version of the same thing. A nod. Pat myself on the chest. A slight shrug. Translation: My bad, maybe.
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Old Mon Dec 15, 2008, 05:31pm
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Emotions

Remember that they have an emotional interest in the outcome!

I think that there are several things that work for me.

First one that always helps is:

"Tell me what you saw coach." Listen, then reply with the truth. My normal reply is "... coach I believe that I was in position to make the call and from my angle it did not look like that. I would love to see the video of game, would you please send after the game." Be very succinct and brief but do not appear to walk away from coach. This normally works best after a foul call and you are table side. That is why we go table side in three mechanics.

Second on that sometimes can break the ice"

"Coach I am not sure that I heard a question in there, could you rephrase that a little." I normally use this when I know the coach a little bit better.

Third that you can use once in a blue moon

"Coach I absolutely booted that call. That one is on me."

Fourth one is

"Coach I was in position and I saw the whole play."

Fifth one is

"Coach when you calm down and state a question, I will listen but until then you will have to yell some one else."

Sixth one is

talk to one of the assistants and tell them to rein the head coach in
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Old Mon Dec 15, 2008, 05:32pm
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Do you also have sign language for them when they complain and you are100% correct you got the call/ no call correct???
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Old Mon Dec 15, 2008, 05:38pm
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I agree with OHBB, being able to succinctly use rule terminology and do it in a confident manner. Had a coach wanting a 3-second violation after a shot bounced off the rim and both teams were going for the ball near the side line away from both of us. "Coach there's no team control on a shot and until a member of his team gets control, there is no 3-second count." What else could he say?

Some coaches will take the explanation and the ones that don't and want to keep complaining start to fall on deaf ears. Know your rules and explain them with confidence.
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Old Mon Dec 15, 2008, 05:49pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shishstripes View Post
I agree with OHBB, being able to succinctly use rule terminology and do it in a confident manner. Had a coach wanting a 3-second violation after a shot bounced off the rim and both teams were going for the ball near the side line away from both of us. "Coach there's no team control on a shot and until a member of his team gets control, there is no 3-second count." What else could he say?

Some coaches will take the explanation and the ones that don't and want to keep complaining start to fall on deaf ears. Know your rules and explain them with confidence.
And some coaches "accept" the explanation because they don't know what you just said. The year the team control rule went into effect, we had a foul by the offense during a throw-in.

Me: Blue, 14, push, one and one.

Coach: (sarcastically) So you're gonna shoot on the offensive foul?

Me: Coach, there is no team control during a throw-in.

His mouth opened..........and not another word came out. My idea at the time was that the phrase team control was foreign to him.
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Old Mon Dec 15, 2008, 06:08pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OHBBREF View Post
Work on your posture so that you apear open and receptive when you are talking to them. (example - having your arms crossed in front of you give a closed off impression as though you are not listening or willing to take in information).

RELAX!
I picked up a pointer several years back that, on posture -- I always try to stand beside a coach when we're talking -- shoulder to shoulder. This keeps the coach from "getting in your face" (and you as well) and is a less confrontational posture -- also helps you keep your eyes on the floor.
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Old Mon Dec 15, 2008, 07:38pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BBall_Junkie View Post
Do you also have sign language for them when they complain and you are100% correct you got the call/ no call correct???
Yes, it's a very simple gesture involving only one finger - and you can use either hand. In fact, doing it with both hands adds to the meaning.
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