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  #1 (permalink)  
Old Mon Jan 19, 2015, 10:51am
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Unhappy Advice

I had a game last week I wish I could have handled better so looking for some advice.

Boys JV / V contest at local HS, I arrive to find a partner who shows up about 20 minutes before game time and I've never seen before. We pregame as he's putting on shoes and while we are on the court . He begins the JV Captain's meeting and starts with "we are going to be preventative officiating then proceeds talking for another 2 or 3 minutes on OOB, play defense with feet, etc.... In my opinion way too much but it's his game. At the end he asks if there are any questions ..... then raises his hand and "chops down " and says " LET"S GET IT ON !!!!" very loudly. All look at each other like WTH was that?

JV game begins and I'm thinking maybe I misjudged because it goes on without a hitch (a very easy JV contest). As we are watching warmups for Varsity I'm sensing he has little or no experience as a Varsity official due to questions he's asking and seems a bit nervous. Game begins and within a few minutes I realize he has swallowed his whistle except for OOB and obvious violations. The play quickly becomes very physical and soon both coaches are letting me know about it. By the end of the second quarter each coach has told me basically the same thing "I'm not sure why your partner isn't blowing the whistle but you have to get control of the game" I tell them "we have the game under control coach" as to not throw my partner under the bus.

I talked with my partner at halftime and emphasize the need to blow the whistle on the fouls (don't talk with the players just blow it). Ultimately, the game became more and more physical as it went on (evidently a player hit in face by elbow of player with ball after rebound--- no call) . By the middle of the 3rd quarter I decided to "reach" on some calls as to prevent the game from getting way out of hand. I hated to do this but it was just getting too physical (I don't believe he called more than 2 fouls the whole game). The game was very close game with the visitors winning by 1.

I’m in my 10th year BUT only have concentrated on Varsity games the last 3 (conflicts previous years with kids playing). I guess I’ve been lucky this situation hasn’t come up before in Boys V game…… (it’s happened to me before in lower level games but not in Boys V where it can be difficult to “just work the game” due to the speed) --- 2 man .

Advice – What could I have done differently and what else would you communicate to the coach.

Help is appreciated
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Old Mon Jan 19, 2015, 10:58am
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Nice job

From the sounds of it, you did a decent job handling this. Is it safe to assume he was the 'R' on the JV game and you were the 'R' on the V game?

If that's the case, you probably had 15-20 minutes between games to go through a more thorough pregame...also, were you able to get together during timeouts to discuss both coach's (and presumably your) concerns? In two person, it's ok to reach a bit, especially for hard contact that your partner may have missed.

Not sure what your relationship with your assignor is, but a quick note about the game might be helpful.
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Old Mon Jan 19, 2015, 11:00am
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You have more experience then me, so I won't pretend to know it all.

1. Surprised he under-officiated. Most varsity newbies tend to over-officiate rather than the opposite. But I guess everyone responds to stress differently.

2. Probably would have started reaching sooner than the 3rd quarter. Sometimes you just have to do this when you're partner is clearly out of his/her league. More whistles than less is probably the best of a bad situation here. You can do a lot of good through dead ball officiating...but only when the ball is dead.

3. Don't call him that night, but the next time you have a beer with your assignor, I suppose it wouldn't hurt if the subject of your mystery partner just happened to come up.
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Old Mon Jan 19, 2015, 11:54am
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I agree with crosscounty55, you should have started calling everything much sooner. Calling everything might cause your P to wake up and call some fouls. On the other hand it might not, but he's already not blowing his whistle so it can't hurt.
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Old Mon Jan 19, 2015, 12:26pm
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Originally Posted by crosscountry55 View Post
1. Surprised he under-officiated. Most varsity newbies tend to over-officiate rather than the opposite. But I guess everyone responds to stress differently.
The progressions steps start over at each level.

1. Afraid to blow the whistle.
2. Calling everything you see
3. Ovecompensating on A/D, letting too much go.
4. Settling in to a good balance.

They may move faster as you get to higher levels, but I think they're all there for most of us.
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Old Mon Jan 19, 2015, 12:30pm
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Originally Posted by AremRed View Post
I agree with crosscounty55, you should have started calling everything much sooner. Calling everything might cause your P to wake up and call some fouls. On the other hand it might not, but he's already not blowing his whistle so it can't hurt.
Agree....when you've got a partner who is just not there, you must assume the whole court is yours. Otherwise, the game can go sideways and one person will not be enough to bring that back.
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Old Mon Jan 19, 2015, 12:31pm
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Originally Posted by crosscountry55 View Post
. . . Don't call him that night, but the next time you have a beer with your assignor, I suppose it wouldn't hurt if the subject of your mystery partner just happened to come up.
Hmmmmmm. That sincere feedback needs to be communicated long before the next beer. If your assigner is unaware of the limited proficiency of this official, which sometimes happens, he needs to know sooner rather than later. In time for him to adjust his schedule if he needs to so as not to burden another official and team with his inexperience.
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Last edited by Freddy; Mon Jan 19, 2015 at 12:58pm.
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Old Mon Jan 19, 2015, 01:13pm
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I appreciate the feedback and have already contacted my assignor and discussed with him.

Thanks again
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Old Mon Jan 19, 2015, 01:44pm
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Originally Posted by Refk View Post
I had a game last week I wish I could have handled better so looking for some advice.

Boys JV / V contest at local HS, I arrive to find a partner who shows up about 20 minutes before game time and I've never seen before. We pregame as he's putting on shoes and while we are on the court . He begins the JV Captain's meeting and starts with "we are going to be preventative officiating then proceeds talking for another 2 or 3 minutes on OOB, play defense with feet, etc.... In my opinion way too much but it's his game. At the end he asks if there are any questions ..... then raises his hand and "chops down " and says " LET"S GET IT ON !!!!" very loudly. All look at each other like WTH was that?
I think most of the previous posters have pretty much said how I would handle it as well. I can't help but comment on the first part, I was just short of laughing out loud picturing this guy's ridiculous pregame, capped with the "Let's get it on!" Chop!! Classic!
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Old Mon Jan 19, 2015, 03:42pm
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Originally Posted by Refk View Post
Advice – What could I have done differently and what else would you communicate to the coach.

Help is appreciated
By the end of the 1st quarter you should have figured out he wasn't going to blow the whistle and then starting calling fouls "that need to be called" regardless of where they occur. The responsibility for a game that gets "way too physical" belongs to ALL officials on the floor.

As for the coach, simply say "Coach, I understand." You are simply acknowledging that you heard him and you're not agreeing or disagreeing with him. By telling him: "We have the game under control", you're doing two things: 1) you're lying to him because you don't really think that; and 2) you're ruining your credibility with him...he's going to think you don't know what you're talking about and are just as bad as your partner...(furthermore you don't really believe what you're telling him anyway!)
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Old Tue Jan 20, 2015, 01:29am
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I've been working roughly the same amount of time you have and by now I would think you would have a decent relationship with the assigner. Absolutely give him a heads up on the guy.
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Old Tue Jan 20, 2015, 06:55am
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Originally Posted by frezer11 View Post
I think most of the previous posters have pretty much said how I would handle it as well. I can't help but comment on the first part, I was just short of laughing out loud picturing this guy's ridiculous pregame, capped with the "Let's get it on!" Chop!! Classic!
Was Mills Lane your partner? If not, he probably watched too much Celebrity Deathmatch.
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Old Tue Jan 20, 2015, 09:13am
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I certainly will use "I understand" next time (hoping there isn't a next time). I officiated the next day with my normal partner and we discussed the game. I went through the whole scenario with him and both of us agreed I should not have said " We've go it under control" . It was a game I'll remember, especially the Captain's meeting.

Thanks again


Last edited by Refk; Tue Jan 20, 2015 at 09:28am.
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Old Tue Jan 20, 2015, 12:24pm
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LOL at the "Let's get it on!" comment; being a 4th year guy myself and just starting to get some varsity experience, this sounds like a guy who doesn't want to be "that guy" calling ticky tack stuff in a varsity game, so he just doesn't call anything. He's probably heard discussions about big boy basketball, and "at this level" that's not a foul, and he is waiting to have you show him what a foul is/isn't. Just tell him to call his game and it will work itself out.
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