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  #1 (permalink)  
Old Tue Jan 14, 2003, 11:54pm
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Last Thursday, I had a boys varsity game. Rough first half with 25 fouls called. With 4 min. to go in the half, we have a crash and as I'm hustling in to make sure things go smooth, A1 stands up and flexes at B1. I say to him "Don't you taunt him." I thought it was a good piece of preventive officiating that possibly diffused a situation. No other problems in the first half.

During the intermission, home coach and principal come into the locker room with a question for me. The player I told not to taunt told his coach that I called him a MFer. I was shocked! I told the coach exactly what I said and said the kid obviously heard me wrong. They leave.

The second half is much more calm and team A wins by 20. After we shower and get dressed to leave, I asked to AD to escort us out just in case. When we get outside, everyone is gone so I was relieved. Well, today I get a call from my assignor and he tells me this kid's mother is pissed! I have to call the AD tomorrow and tell him my side of the story.

Here's my question. What should I do in this situation? I know what I said and I'm not going to explain to fifty people to try and prove my innocence. I will talk to the AD and my assignor, but I don't think I have any responsibility to talk to a parent. I know she is protecting her kid, but her kid is wrong. What do I do?
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Old Wed Jan 15, 2003, 12:10am
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Quote:
Originally posted by BigDave
Last Thursday, I had a boys varsity game. Rough first half with 25 fouls called. With 4 min. to go in the half, we have a crash and as I'm hustling in to make sure things go smooth, A1 stands up and flexes at B1. I say to him "Don't you taunt him." I thought it was a good piece of preventive officiating that possibly diffused a situation. No other problems in the first half.

During the intermission, home coach and principal come into the locker room with a question for me. The player I told not to taunt told his coach that I called him a MFer. I was shocked! I told the coach exactly what I said and said the kid obviously heard me wrong. They leave.

The second half is much more calm and team A wins by 20. After we shower and get dressed to leave, I asked to AD to escort us out just in case. When we get outside, everyone is gone so I was relieved. Well, today I get a call from my assignor and he tells me this kid's mother is pissed! I have to call the AD tomorrow and tell him my side of the story.

Here's my question. What should I do in this situation? I know what I said and I'm not going to explain to fifty people to try and prove my innocence. I will talk to the AD and my assignor, but I don't think I have any responsibility to talk to a parent. I know she is protecting her kid, but her kid is wrong. What do I do?

Here is my advice to you:

1) Call your StateHSAA: a) explain the situation to the appropriate person. b) Complete a game incident report with your StateHSAA.

2) I would not meet with this student's parents under any circumstances.

3) Call the school's AD and tell him that you will not meet with the student's parents. You have already stated your position to the coach and that AD the previous night in the precence of you partner.

4) Let you assigner and your local association officers know of your situation.
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Old Wed Jan 15, 2003, 12:53am
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It also wouldn't hurt to make a written statement for your records and to get one from your partner(s) as well.
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  #4 (permalink)  
Old Wed Jan 15, 2003, 02:14am
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Cool

I had a similiar situation (I do not recall the details in my game but I do remember that it was not a crash play) in a JV game in Texas. Player flexed and took steps to the player. I T'd the player in a heartbeat. When the coached asked me what it was for, I told him and he immediately took that player out.

I ejected a 12 and under player in a girls softball game for getting up on a play and walking up on the pitcher with clenched fists. I do not give warnings on those type of situations. You get a T if I am working the game.

Heck, in a men's game the other night my partner is asking for the player to give him the ball. I turn around and he puts the ball on the ground and walks away. Blank that. I T'D him and while going to report that foul another player says that is bull ****. Guess what he got. That's right, a T.

I understand (well I like to think I do) about preventive officiating but I do not tolerate unsportsmanlike behavior. If it's like what I described above, there is no warning. Am I going to give a warning to the next guy who does that same thing or something similar? Every one is going to expect it.

My mindset is if you commit an unsporting act, you should be penalized immediately. They do not need or warrant a reprieve IMHO. Next time that happpens, give that player a T and go to the scorer table to report it. Then you can explain it to the coach and he will handle it.

Other than that, the other guys have given superb advice.

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Old Wed Jan 15, 2003, 02:50am
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I wonder This kid, for some bizzare reason, is trying to create trouble. The very fact he would "flex" on some opponent in a basketball game is proof enough of that for me.

I don't see how what you said could IN ANY WAY come across as what heard. Even in a noisy gym, especially if you were in fairly close proximity to him (which is sounds like you were).

Either this kid took a trip to the Twilight Zone, needs his hearing checked, or he really is a MF'er.

Superb advice from the others....document everything, be up front about everything, and stick to your guns. Your association will likely stand behind you all the way.
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Old Wed Jan 15, 2003, 06:26am
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In Nassau County (Long Island, NY) we have a zero tolerance policy for taunting, baiting, or trash-talking. These types of behavior are immediately penalized with a "T". In fact, we always mention this at the pregame conference with the captains. They all know the rule and understand that it will be enforced.
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Old Wed Jan 15, 2003, 07:30am
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Quote:
Originally posted by BigDave
A1 stands up and flexes at B1. I say to him "Don't you taunt him."
BigDave,
Good luck with that mess.
The kid didn't understand your word.
I usually defuse that stuff by asking something like, "You okay?" or saying something like, "Take it easy." KISS method.

If that sitch happened to me, it would just gnaw at my gut until it went away.
Again, good luck.
mick
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Old Wed Jan 15, 2003, 08:06am
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Thanks for the input, Guys. I'll post an update after I talk to the AD.
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Old Wed Jan 15, 2003, 08:10am
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Quote:
Originally posted by BigDave
Thanks for the input, Guys. I'll post an update after I talk to the AD.
Good luck, and do take Mark & Tony's advice.
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Old Wed Jan 15, 2003, 09:04am
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Was the game video taped? While that may not be able to see your face during the incident, it will at least show the incident. If you are fortunate, it happened at an angle where you can see both you and the player and see the exchange. Video always has a way of putting things in focus. If they have a beef, have them send it the commissioner. It will work a lot better then He said/She said.
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Old Wed Jan 15, 2003, 10:57am
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What's the problem with talking to the parents? This doesn't hapen every game. I am sure you can explane it in 2 minutes. If they understand it you feel ok.

If they don't you know the boy looks like it's parents and you will feel ok aswell.

Pick up the phone!

Communicate!

Thats what referees are good at!
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Old Wed Jan 15, 2003, 11:09am
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Coach2
I deal with parents all the time. They usually are there for their kids, and only their kids. They don't want to hear that their kid was wrong. Refs should not be engaging in this conversation, it is not likely to go well.

As a coach, I have been called everything under the sun by parents who are unhappy with my actions with respect to some of my (ex-) players. I have to take it while they are my players, because they are my players. (I also can get rid of the problem very easily) Some conversations have been VERY ugly. You cannot imagine the stuff I have had to hear, or how vile and foul people can be, no matter how hard you try to have a responsible and reasoned discussion.

So I do not have this faith that this will be a conversation, but rather an opportunity to berate the ref. The ref should communicate to the people who are responsible for dealing with the parents, principal, AD, and/or coach. Those individuals are more likely to listen and then need to deal with their parents.

Parent issues are NOT referee issues.
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Old Wed Jan 15, 2003, 11:27am
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Thanks coach?

Being a teacher I now and understand what you are trying to tell me. But you can not say that in most cases you can not have a normal conversation with parents.

I do agree that they will be on their kids hand in the first place but if you can explane your side of the story and don't forget to tell how you feel I am sure in most cases the parents very much apreciate your call!

I say give it a trie and tell us how it was!

We can learn from it!
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Old Wed Jan 15, 2003, 12:21pm
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coach2,
In theory, he should be able to explain what happened and what he said. However, it appears the kid took the liberty of adding details to what really happened when he told his coach. Now he needs to stick to his story or he goes down in flames with everyone at the school. Knowing how most parents are (my wife included), they have had time to stew on their child being wronged. They are most likely only interested in an apology and seeing the offending party punished (after all, their baby was called a MFer).

Don't see anything positive coming from a discussion with a parent of that nature. If your assessment of them is wrong, the situation just got a lot worse. I advise he not speak with the parents.

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Old Wed Jan 15, 2003, 01:03pm
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Obviously, this would have been easier to use at the game, but I would think that in light of such a serious accusation, I would have had the player who was being taunted corroborate my statement, as he was probably close enough to hear what you said.

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