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Old Thu May 26, 2011, 05:32pm
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Question Mens/Womens?

I know this topic has been pretty much discussed to death, but I'm just looking for some opinions here on my situation.

I'm at the point in my officiating career where I'm going to start making serious attempts to break into college ball. That being said, I'm not sure which side to go for. People in my association are all telling me to go the women's route because they feel I have the right "look" for that game. I'm not really sure what that means. I'm about 5' 10" and on the thin side, which I'm told will help me in the women's game because I appear less intimidating. However, I would like to make an attempt to break into the men's game too. I'm not sure if I should just skip the men's game and go right to women's or make a try at the men's side first. I feel like I'm young enough (I'm 22) where if one side doesn't work out I can try the other.

That being said, would my "look" hurt me in the men's game? i.e. not tall enough, big enough? Would I have the label of men's official follow me if I tried to break into the women's game? I appreciate any suggestions/advice!
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Old Thu May 26, 2011, 05:49pm
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I will put it this way. I am about to go to a college camp that is the supervisor over a D2 league and is a D1 official himself. If I were to work women's basketball which I do not and try to get hired in his league, I would not likely be picked up. Usually you have to choose one or the other and the competition is too high on both that anything you do that makes them show you are not committed to one over the other they will find someone that will be committed. Without knowing anything else about you it is hard to say why you would have the "Women's official look" and I have been told the same thing, but it is about my athleticism and being slim that I could move faster on the Women's side. But I have no desire to work women's basketball and I would not watch or enjoy a women's basketball game so that would be a hard transition for me.

Also you look would not hurt you on the Men's side, but there are a lot of guys that are that tall if not taller and you might not stand out. Then again that depends on how slim and in shape you look as well. At the end of the day this is totally a personal decision. You have a few years to even try both when going to camps, but you have to be on top of the mechanics differences and even some rules differences. And it is very true that advancing in women's basketball is much easier to the Men's side. There are just so many officials that envision themselves on that side and they are good and could work those sides. The Women's side often does not have a lot of guys with the same "look" and it is easier to stand out. I have said these things before and you will not always get the same people that will agree on many aspects of this. I just know what you are going through and you have to ultimately decide what works for you. You have to live with this decision and you have to get in your car and drive an hour or more to work those games. So you have to be able to live with what you enjoy. Nobody can make that decision but you at the end of the day.

Peace
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Old Thu May 26, 2011, 06:08pm
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Thanks for the response. I am athletic and quick so I think that's why they say I have the women's look. Glad to know my look wouldn't necessarily hurt me on the men's side. I guess what I'm more worried about is if I try the men's side and it doesn't work out, would that hurt me if I then tried the women's side? I would prefer the men's side but officiating either side is fine. I just enjoy officiating
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Old Thu May 26, 2011, 06:30pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kingsman1288 View Post
Thanks for the response. I am athletic and quick so I think that's why they say I have the women's look. Glad to know my look wouldn't necessarily hurt me on the men's side. I guess what I'm more worried about is if I try the men's side and it doesn't work out, would that hurt me if I then tried the women's side? I would prefer the men's side but officiating either side is fine. I just enjoy officiating
You are at the age that if it did not work in the next 4 or 5 years you could switch. And unless you already working are college, you could go to both sides of their camps and see how it works out. Sometimes this decision is made for you, like it was made for me. There are people that will never work Men's basketball for example and they have little choices. If you have the money invest in camps on both sides and see what you like the most. You need to find out for yourself and that might help your decision.

Peace
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Old Thu May 26, 2011, 06:57pm
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Appreciate the good answers JRut! I just felt like I was being pigeonholed into being a women's official and I wanted to get some outside opinions.
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Old Thu May 26, 2011, 09:11pm
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How tall is tall?

JR you mentioned height. What is ideal in your opinion? 5'10" isn't too short as I have seen 5'6" guys calling DI, though they have the attitude to compensate. Just wondering your thoughts
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Old Thu May 26, 2011, 09:22pm
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Originally Posted by CDurham View Post
JR you mentioned height. What is ideal in your opinion? 5'10" isn't too short as I have seen 5'6" guys calling DI, though they have the attitude to compensate. Just wondering your thoughts
There was a time they liked guys 6'0" and over, but I am not so sure that matters anymore. There are a lot of newer supervisors and I am not so sure that is true anymore. But then again we are talking D1, not lower level college. There are a lot of guys that are not that tall at the lower level. But if you look at most officials you do not see many newer officials that are that short. Then again this is a supervisor issue.

Peace
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Old Fri May 27, 2011, 09:55am
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Kingsman - a couple of questions:

1) What part of the country are you in? I ask because - out here in the West - more and more of the D-1 conferences are hiring people to work both sides, or at least having camps where both Supervisors are present to see officials work.

2) Who is telling you that you should go to the Women's side? Are they current D-1 Men's officials, or current D-1 Women's officials? Are they current D-1 officials at all?

Bottom line - go to the camps that you want to go to. The worst that can happen is they tell you "No, thanks".
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Old Fri May 27, 2011, 10:47am
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As someone who has been through this experience the past few summers as I am "young" when it comes to officiating at 25 even though I've been doing this for about 8 years now. The advice everyone is giving you on here is correct. If you have the money take the chance to go both a Men's and Women's camp to decide which one you look better. When I decided to go to camp about 3 years ago I went to only a Women's camp. The reason why I decided to do that was because of all the mentors I had where all Women's college officials and they saw something in me that helped me get to where I am at now working in both division 2 and 3.

As for your height it shouldn't make a difference if you go to Women's side at 5'10, I am about the same height as you and I have 2 of my mentors who are 6'2 and 6'4 but they carry themselves as a professional and do there work.

The main point of what I am trying to say is that you are young and can choose which direction you want to go. Just remember that you need to work your butt off at the camps and be noticed. Also, if you have a mentor that works with you ask them for their advice. One of the best decisions I ever did when I started officiating was to find a mentor. I was just lucky enough that my mentor was someone who worked at the college I attended, and til this day all the advice I get from not just that mentor but all of my mentors I wouldn't exchange it for anything in this game.

Peace,
JB
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Old Fri May 27, 2011, 02:34pm
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J Rut is right on...........

King -

I have to agree with everything that J Rut said. I will work a couple camps
this year as an observer and let me say this. There is a certain "it" factor that seperates men and women's officials. A lot of the successful men that work on the women's side seem to me to be a bit more passive and don't have that "type A" personality to get in a coaches face when neccessary.

Remember most super's on the women's side are women and they don't want a man to come in there and tell them how things are to be done. Not being sexist, just the way it is.

A friend of mine worked the NCAA women's tourney this year at the age of 30.
He started going to camps at the age of 19. He is not intimidating physically.
I am sure if he was on the men's side he would be D II and D III material.

This is not to say he can't work.

At 5'10" and thin it sounds as though you are not threatining. Women
supers LOVE that.

Whatever you do work your *** off and take info like a sponge !!!!!!

I get the impression that you want to go to the women's side, but you need some coaxing.

Best of luck !!!!!!
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Old Fri May 27, 2011, 06:55pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rockyroad View Post
Kingsman - a couple of questions:

1) What part of the country are you in? I ask because - out here in the West - more and more of the D-1 conferences are hiring people to work both sides, or at least having camps where both Supervisors are present to see officials work.

2) Who is telling you that you should go to the Women's side? Are they current D-1 Men's officials, or current D-1 Women's officials? Are they current D-1 officials at all?

Bottom line - go to the camps that you want to go to. The worst that can happen is they tell you "No, thanks".
1) I am located in sunny San Diego, CA. All the.camps I know of out here or in the neighboring areas are still one side or the other, except for the JC camp I believe.

2) It's a mix of both men and women's officials, at levels ranging from D-1 to D-3. That's what made me think about this, the fact that officials from both sides were telling me.
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