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Old Wed Sep 07, 2011, 10:31am
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Taking a knee

8th grade game, visiting team has the ball with 9 sec left in the game, up by 7, and say they will take a knee. Defense is informed, and crew "pinches" in to watch the last play. On the snap, the nose guard dives under the center, trying to knock the ball loose, but the QB, holding the ball, takes a knee, game over.

R tells home coach as we are walking off the field that Unsportsmanlike Conduct could've been called on the noseguard, even though there was minimal contact and no encroachment.

I believe that since the ball is live on the snap, the defense could recover a fumble, assuming the defense did nothing illegal, and therefore what the noseguard tried is OK...keeping all players safety in mind.
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Old Wed Sep 07, 2011, 11:06am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by archangel View Post
I believe that since the ball is live on the snap, the defense could recover a fumble, assuming the defense did nothing illegal, and therefore what the noseguard tried is OK...keeping all players safety in mind.
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Agree.

The officials should not have mentioned anything to the defense. Let the offense do their job - down the ball and protect the QB. Let the defense do their job - try to get the ball back so they can win the game. Let the officials do their job - unbiased enforce the rules of the game.

Do we tell the defense when the the offense is going to run a reverse? A pass? A punt?

Just do your job.
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Old Wed Sep 07, 2011, 11:32am
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Another regional thing. Do as the other crews do in your region.
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Old Wed Sep 07, 2011, 11:42am
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Originally Posted by RichMSN View Post
Another regional thing. Do as the other crews do in your region.
Exactly and we do this all the time. It is preventative officiating and it is expected that if a team tells us this they are not trying to continue the game. We tell the defense to inform them, but that does not mean we will not penalize actions that take place if over the top.

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Old Wed Sep 07, 2011, 12:41pm
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Telling the defense what the offense is doing is stupid at best - and only leads to situations like this one. We hit on this every year. At the VERY most - a warning that if the offense takes a knee, not to hit anyone after the play. Even that is borderline for me. If your "area" is telling the teams to inform the defense, then what is your area telling you to do when the team fakes a knee - or when a noseguard tries this maneuver (something he couldn't have done had you not told him the play) and SUCCEEDS? Or if QB botches the snap.

Is your "area" really telling you to invent a rule and call unsportsmanlike conduct for A) legally running a fake play or B) committing a legal defensive act? That's just stupid. There's no other word. And I guarantee your STATE is not telling you to do this... so what happens when your "area" teams move up in the playoffs?

In any of these cases, you are going the game and the kids a disservice by changing the way a play should have played out.
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Old Wed Sep 07, 2011, 12:49pm
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Originally Posted by mbcrowder View Post
Is your "area" really telling you to invent a rule and call unsportsmanlike conduct for A) legally running a fake play or B) committing a legal defensive act? That's just stupid. There's no other word. And I guarantee your STATE is not telling you to do this... so what happens when your "area" teams move up in the playoffs?

In any of these cases, you are going the game and the kids a disservice by changing the way a play should have played out.
We have had this discussion before but there are rules that govern faking things in football.

Secondly no one says "do not hit anyone." I have never said that or expected that to happen. Of course they are going to hit each other, but telling players the intentions when the game is clearly over is warning them to not go over the top with their behavior. If a QB takes a knee and he is cleaned I would rather tell them something then have a full out fight. And so you know "teams all over the state know this procedure." It is nothing special when a team enters the playoffs. Also when teams are in the playoffs, they are likely to play games with area teams anyway. Most of my playoff games were always with teams in conferences in the area. Only once was a game with teams in one part of the state and the other was from the other end of the state (St. Louis area and a Chicago area suburban team) and that was a Semi-Final. I recall the same thing happen in that game and no one made a big deal out of it, which is why this is strictly and area thing. The expectations of our teams are to end the game calmly.

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Old Wed Sep 07, 2011, 03:22pm
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Why even take the last snap then if we are expecting both teams to just quit and not do anything? Just call the game over and be done if we are preventing the defense one last shot to try to get the ball.

Some may say the defense could never get the ball. I say wrong. I had a game where the QB was going to do the kneel down as he told us he was. Well, on the snap it was muffed. Luckily for the defense I didn't tell them anything so they were coming full speed. Offense had their guard down and the defense recovered the ball. Next play was a TD for Team B to win the game. Imagine if I would have told the defense not to do anything. If the offense tells me they are taking the knee I just let them know they better block because the defense is not stopping.
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Old Wed Sep 07, 2011, 03:45pm
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1) The original post referenced an 8th grade game. I've worked hundreds of these over 20 years and can tell you 8th grade kids will try nearly anything and will forget almost everything. "Preventative officiating" can be considered part-time coaching at this level.

2) Far too often is a good day with a well called game turned sour on the last few snaps because of a situation that pops up at the end of the game. Any kid that's played ball for more than a year or two should know the drill by the time he's in high school anyway. If you get rated by the coaching staffs, the way we do in WI, no matter how good your crew was....a sour note at the final whistle is the last thing the coach remembers when he grabs his eval form that night or the next day.

3) I've been pro-active with this, and I have yet to sniff anything considered unfair or not in the spirit of the game by showing the hand on the last play. The team being kneeled upon has had 47 minutes and 30 seconds to get the lead and couldn't do it. If anything, this is good game management.

4) Doing little to nothing in this situation is far worse than doing or saying too much to prevent something from breaking bad, IMO....see the Sarasota Gators video.

5) There are other words to use in lieu of stupid.
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Old Wed Sep 07, 2011, 03:50pm
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Originally Posted by JasonTX View Post
Why even take the last snap then if we are expecting both teams to just quit and not do anything? Just call the game over and be done if we are preventing the defense one last shot to try to get the ball.

Some may say the defense could never get the ball. I say wrong. I had a game where the QB was going to do the kneel down as he told us he was. Well, on the snap it was muffed. Luckily for the defense I didn't tell them anything so they were coming full speed. Offense had their guard down and the defense recovered the ball. Next play was a TD for Team B to win the game. Imagine if I would have told the defense not to do anything. If the offense tells me they are taking the knee I just let them know they better block because the defense is not stopping.
I would literally pay to see video of this. Not saying it didn't happen, but would love to see the subsequent reaction of the opposing staff, team, crowd and especially...the officials.
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Old Wed Sep 07, 2011, 04:01pm
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I'll have to admit I'm in the say nothing group.

It is not our job to inform the defense to stop playing or to not try and get the ball legally.

Hypothetical situation: A muffs the snap and we have told the defense to lay off. A recovers the muff and wins, while the defense goes to their sideline and says the referees said not to hit them. How will you ever answer the questions your supervisors have, not to mention the irate coaching staff?
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Old Wed Sep 07, 2011, 04:07pm
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I'm not a big fan of telling them to lay off. I however tell them regularly if the QB does kneel down, I want nothing stupid happening.
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Old Wed Sep 07, 2011, 04:48pm
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Originally Posted by SE Minnestoa Re View Post
I'm not a big fan of telling them to lay off. I however tell them regularly if the QB does kneel down, I want nothing stupid happening.
Bingo.

"They say they are taking a knee. Be smart."
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Old Wed Sep 07, 2011, 06:05pm
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Originally Posted by bisonlj View Post
Bingo.

"They say they are taking a knee. Be smart."
Agree as well. "Drop down quickly and don't hit the QB late" works as well.

I am still waiting for teams to figure out that they can already be on a knee when the ball is snapped.
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Old Thu Sep 08, 2011, 01:14am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JRutledge View Post
We have had this discussion before but there are rules that govern faking things in football.

Peace
And what would these "Live Ball" rules be?
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Old Thu Sep 08, 2011, 01:19am
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Originally Posted by Jim S View Post
And what would these "Live Ball" rules be?
Not sure what live ball rules you are talking about. But it is clear that you cannot run deception plays in football anymore. They cannot fake taking a knee.

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