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Old Sat Jan 23, 2010, 01:45pm
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Straight-lined

Looking for general input on this matter. The context: GVarsity. I'm trail. Ballhandler and I are on the same line/plane, about 3 feet off the sideline. She passes toward the baseline, straight in line with my line of sight. Really hard for me to see if the player dragged her pivot foot on the pass, which the opposing coach and bench were calling for (they were perpendicular to the play). I just couldn't see her foot well enough to make the call even though I was the nearest calling official and it was in my area. I always work on the assumption, "If I don't see it, I don't call it." A few refs I work with disagree, "...it's obvious something happened, so I call it." I work hard to maintain good angles. However, sometimes the straightline happens. I wont call if I don't see. Sounds basic, but....
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Old Sat Jan 23, 2010, 02:05pm
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Don't call what you don't see. Coaches, fans and players generally don't know the rules so to call something that you don't see because of there reactions is not a good idea.

You can work more towards the middle of the court as T in this situation to get a better angle on players near your sideline.
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Old Sat Jan 23, 2010, 05:13pm
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I generally work on the same basis: If I don't see it, I cannot call it. On a few occasions when I have made a call because I'm certain "something" must have happened, at least half the time I've been spectacularly wrong.

While we certainly don't want to get straight-lined, unless you can "anticipate the next play", it's hard to never get straight-lined. However, if the drag of the pivot foot was significant, you should have been able to pick that up with your depth perception. If you were looking at her feet, and you didn't detect movement, there probably wasn't much.

It's just as likely that "the bench" was full of it. I had a play in my GV game last night where the girl picked up her dribble while moving at a pretty good clip. Watching you just knew a travel was coming because there was no way she could not drag her pivot. But she managed to do it. Didn't matter to opponent's "bench", they were already calling for a travel. "The bench" sees what it wants to see, and calls for what they want, not necessarily what actually happened.
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Old Sat Jan 23, 2010, 07:08pm
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This season, I can only think of one time that I called something I really did not see, but "knew" it happened. I called a double dribble on a girl which I knew happened just by the way her hands were moving and the little delay in the girl's normal time between dribbles. No one objected, the facial expression on the girl showed that she knew she double dribbled and did not object, coaches were quiet. Partner tells me later that he thought she double dribbled too but didn't have clear view of it. I told him I didn't either but it just was one of those moments that you knew it even if you didn't see it.

99.9% of the time I go with the "don't see it, can't call it" philosophy, this was just one of those very rare moments.
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