Kollen Bulletin

From: "Rich Kollen" - dayofgame@aol.com
Subject: SCCFOA
Date: Wednesday, September 01, 2010



I would like welcome administrators, coaches and officials to the 2010 edition of my weekly bulletins on community college football in Southern California.

These weekly bulletins are intended bring together officials, coaches and administers working as a cohesive unit with the sole purpose of making the Southern California Football Association (“SCFA”), SCIAC, and NAIA a good experience for our student-athletes. In these weekly bulletins, I discuss issues and situations affecting our local college football games. I encourage input from each of you on situations that occur during the season, either in your games or other games you’ve seen. By sharing information, I hope to continue to improve the quality of officiating in all of our games.

This year, the Southern California Collegiate Football Officials Association has 39 new officials, bringing our total to over 300 officials. Among the many sacrifices we ask of our officials, they graciously covered over 50 intra-squad scrimmages last week at no cost to our colleges. On behalf of the SCFA, thank you to everyone who gave of their time and extraordinary skills to assist our teams as they prepare for the 2010 season.

Last season recap.
· Congratulations to Bob Jastrab and his Mt. San Antonio Mounties for winning the CCCAA State Championship and the National Football Championship.
· Congratulations to all of our 37 colleges and coaches who participated in 165 competitive football games with only seven decorum violations (i.e., ejections).
· After discussions and weekly evaluations from coaches and game observers, the officiating program has addressed (and will continue to address) the following concerns this season:
      o Making calls that cannot be supported by game video. Officials are aware that quality game videos now mean that they will be held accountable like never before.
      o Not being in the best position on the field, thus lowering our ability to get calls correct.
      o Better communications with players and coaches.

2010 Officiating Program Goals:

Pace of the Game. We will address this during the year and game evaluators will be timing the duration between the dead-ball signal and the referee's ready-for-play signal. Next year we hope to adopt the standard 40 second play-clock. I am hoping we can get this to between 15-18 seconds. If referees do this consistently, our game times will be reduced. We are aware that coaches are always concerned about losing plays; however, if we are successful in this goal, the time of the game will be shorter, but few plays should be lost. By increasing the pace of the games, players will have to stay focused on the game, and will have less free time between plays in which to engage in unsportsmanlike behavior toward opponents.

Relating to Coaches. The officials are aware of the difficulties facing coaches in their handling of today’s student-athletes. The number one reason coaches call me, as the supervisor, is a lack of effective communication between officials and coaches. Although I firmly believe the officials have improved their communication skills with coaches over the past several years, I will be offering suggestions each week to our officials in a never-ending effort to better communicate with our most valued constituents, our coaches. Officials will continue to work on explaining calls to the head coaches (e.g., “coach, #43 never turned to look at the ball and created contact with the receiver, thus resulting in DPI”). Head coaches, I have instructed our officials to communicate only with you during the game. Therefore, I ask that you instruct your assistants to refrain from entering into discussions with the officials.

No Phantom Calls. After watching video from last year’s games, the one thing we must correct immediately are fouls or violation that simply did not occur. It is very difficult to defend calls when I don’t see them. Remember, with video technology, officials are now more accountable than ever for EVERY call. Officials have been instructed to work hard to get into a good position (mechanics) to see a play start, develop and finish. Once they get into this position, and are patient, they can decide whether a potential foul had a material effect on the play. Officials are reminded of our philosophy: if you THINK it is a foul, it is not a foul. An official must KNOW it is a foul, and it should have an impact on the play for it to be flagged (with the caveat that any safety fouls will be called, regardless of impact on the play).

Early Season Football Issues:

Wedge Formation. Due to the new NCAA policy of publishing rulebooks only every other year, there are not many changes this year. The only truly new rule is the prohibition on a formation of a wedge on a kickoff return. This has been discussed at length with the coaches. I have suggested that, if the coaches do not teach the wedge formation, it will not be called. The foul is for an “intentional” formation of a wedge. The only time we should see this situation is when two two-person wedges combine. That said, I don’t expect to see this foul much this season. Coaches, you have been instructed on this new rule, and should have a firm understanding of it.

Injuries. When a player incurs an injury, including showing signs of a concussion, the officials should declare a timeout and the player must leave the game for at least one play. Coaches cannot use a time-out to “buy” the player back into the game. An injured player may not return until (1) he has sat out at least one play (unless the injury is followed by halftime), AND (2) he has been cleared by the appropriate medical professional designated by the institution. Coaches are reminded that the medical personnel have a job to do. Coaches should not attempt to reinsert a player until that player has been properly cleared.

Small Issues. A couple of things came up in scrimmages last week. I ask the officials to remember the following two rules: (1) kicking tees are not permitted on a try or field goal attempt; and (2) there is no such thing as a 5-yard facemask penalty in the NCAA.

Thanks to all of our administrators, coaches and officials, and best of luck for a successful season!

“Success comes from knowing that you did your best to become the best that you are capable of becoming.” – John Wooden

Rich Kollen
Director of Football Operations

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