From: "Rich Kollen" - email@example.com
Date: Thursday, September 27, 2007 9:35:00 AM
There were some very intense games last Saturday. These tough games will continue this weekend, as we get deeper into league games. Keep working hard on communicating with the head coaches, making common sense calls and dead-ball officiating.
It is a must that officials check with each other when a team timeout is taken. All officials must agree on how many team timeouts each team has remaining. It can severely effect the game when an official gives a head coach the wrong number of timeouts he has left in a half.
We had a situation in which a delay penalty was called when the center snapped the ball before the "ready for play" signal by the Referee. Although correct by rule, we shouldn't ever have this situation. When we get into a hurry-up offense or have multiple substitutions, the Umpire should stay over the ball (not allowing a snap), until the Referee can get into the proper position and whistle the ball "ready for play." Referees and Umpires, you must control the pace of the game. Don't let the players control you.
Use common sense on measurements. The Mountain West Conference instructs its Referees to always grant a head coach's request for a measurement, even after the ball is put in play. I am aware that the book says no measurement after the ball has been put in play. However, speaking only for the Mission Conference, I want you to measure any time a head coach requests one (if within a yard). Call it a PR Measurement. It only takes a few minutes, and it quiets the coaches. For the rules "gurus": Yes, I am instructing you to disregard Rule 5-1-3-c in the Mission Conference.
During the game, an official noticed two players with the same number. One
was in the game and the other in the team area. He thought this was a foul, but waited until a timeout to ask another official. I'm glad the official waited, but we need to know the rules. Players with the same number are legal, but they cannot be in the game at the same time.
There was an issue with a celebration foul in a big game. Rule 9-2-1-a-1(d) prohibits "any delayed, excessive, prolonged or choreographed act by which a player (or players) attempts to focus attention upon himself (or themselves)." The key to this rule is excessive and prolonged. This is a judgment call. Like any other call, always use common sense and know what affect a call may have on a football game or a team. This particular foul was the player's second unsporting act of the game. While we fully support you if you decide to eject a player, let's make sure it is warranted. As for the celebration fouls, Jack Wood and I have decided that the Back Judge should have the primary responsibility for watching the scoring player for celebration fouls. Please discuss this in your pre-game and remember that the celebration must be excessive and prolonged.
Also remember that unsporting fouls MUST be reported to the head coach. Explain that another unsporting foul will cause the player to be ejected and the player will also be forced to serve a one-game suspension. Referees, in your pre-games this week, discuss the differences between unsporting fouls and personal fouls. There's a big difference.
I received a call on the mechanics of the Umpire and Side Judge on the swinging-gate play. I feel that the best mechanic on this play would be not to have the Side Judge attempt to get to the normal scrimmage kick position when the swinging gate changes to a scrimmage kick formation.
Finally, I have attached a letter from Carlyle Carter, the Executive Director of the California Community College Athletic Association. He refers to us as the guardians of the game and he promises support from his office when we professionally carry out our duties as officials. There is nothing better than full support from the league.
I wanted to take a few moments to express some personal thoughts on the relationship between our officials and coaches as "guardians of the game". Let's face it, hopefully long after we are all gone, the great game of football will still be going on. Although, football was not "my" game, I have been fortunate to have a son that played at the NCAA Division I level and in the Big Ten. I had a chance to travel to the Big House, The Shoe, Happy Valley and all of the other stadiums to watch my son play. Some of those experiences were great and some were not so great because some fans are less than hospitable to visiting teams and their fans. The most memorable trips (even in losses) were when teams and fans showed their class. They knew the game - they respected the game and therefore they respected EVERYTHING about the game!
I have also been fortunate to be around some of the classiest coaches that also showed a
reverence for the game and the fact that they had a role to play as a guardian of the game. Joe Paterno and the Tressels of Ohio to name a couple. While these coaches are extremely competitive, they keep their composure on the sideline and demonstrate a professionalism that we need to see more. I have also been around others that have left an indelible mark as being everything you wouldn't want your child to experience. The profanity; the vulgarity as well as blatant unethical behavior. I sometimes wonder if they have forgotten the kids are watching and learning these lessons along with the X's and O's. My goal here is not to call anyone out but remind us all that we are "guardians of the game" and we need to remember the influence we have on the young men under our charge and above all the responsibility to be professional in how we approach the game. As officials, I expect the rules to be enforced and when coaches and or players cross the line you will use the tools at your disposal to rectify the situation. You will never lack support from this office for doing your job and ensuring equal application of the rules.
My expectation is that the coach/official relationship will be based upon mutual respect and above all professionalism, win or lose. We not only need to teach our kids how to win, but also how to lose with class. As a former 2yr. college athlete I am tired of hearing the same old derogatory stuff about 2yr colleges. I remember last year during a nationally televised game, an announcer stating, "You might be able to get away with that kind of stuff at a JC, but not here." Let's not feed into that mentality by providing the very bullets that they fire back at us!
I wish you all a successful remainder of the season -