Kollen Bulletin

From: "Rich Kollen" - dayofgame@me.com
Subject: SCCFOA
Date: Wednesday, November 11, 2015



As we begin the last Saturday of the regular season and prepare for the state playoffs and bowl games, I hope all of our student-athletes had a positive experience. The 37 colleges participating in the Southern California Football Association have offered so many the opportunity to fulfill their dreams of playing college football. In previous weeks, we have pointed out the high level of accountability that football officials are now experiencing. This was evident when an ACC officiating crew was suspended for missing judgment calls on the last play of the Duke/Miami game. What happened on the play, and why the fouls and other calls were not made, will never be known. Surely, some level of focus and consideration was lost. With TV, social media, and bowl selection criteria, each game is important. Our community colleges offer over 20 competitive sports. I’m not sure that the officials in any other sport are held to the same accountability as football officials. It is a testament to this great game that so many are interested in it. It is a rarity in baseball, basketball or soccer that an official gets a call from the coordinator asking them to please watch the video of a play and explain why a call was made or not made. This happens each week with our football officials, and is done only to make football officiating better. Videos of incorrect calls are shared each week with officials for training. The college game is difficult to officiate. The size and speed of our athletes make for many tough decisions during the game. While television commentators and fans review and criticize calls for days/weeks/months, the on-field officials are forced to make the call in a split second. It isn’t easy, but I hope it is still fun. Officiating is the only job where you’re expected to be perfect, and get better every week. But remember, without officials, it’s just recess!

The “0” tolerance policy under which each game has been played has resulted in a culture shift in our game. Thanks to the players, coaches, and officials, we took a big step in the right direction to improve California community college football and college athletics in general.

There are a few teachable plays from the last two weeks of games:

If a team still has a timeout remaining, they can use the it to avoid a 10-second runoff. This was done correctly, thanks to an official stepping up with that knowledge of the rule. Rule 3-4-4-d.

By philosophy, to have defensive or offensive pass interference, the ball should be thrown at least one yard beyond the line of scrimmage.

The only uniform numbering issue that needs to be reported to the Referee is when a player changes numbers. Once the change in number is reported to the Referee, he must inform the other team of the change. The easiest way to do that is to make an announcement over the microphone. Make sure the opposing team’s coach can hear you. The exception to the numbering rule on kicking plays does not have to be reported.

When a defensive player touches a pass, defensive pass interference (DPI) shall be removed. The touching must be done before the ball reaches the receiver who is the victim of the potential DPI. If the touching is by the fouling player, or close to such player, DPI can be called.

The process of a fumble recovery is the same as catching a pass. The player needs firm control of the ball with a body part touching inbounds to complete the process of a fumble recovery.

Clock operators, please remember that a coach’s signal for a timeout is nothing more than a request for a timeout. The timeout is not granted until an official signals to stop the clock. Officials, work on your game awareness and be ready for when a coach might want a timeout.

Players need to wear kneepads, but they do not need to cover the knee. Rule 1-4-4-d.

Lately, there have been questions on bandanas being worn by players. By rule, the bandanas must be completely under the helmet with nothing visible when on the field. Rule 1-4-7-j.

We had an issue with spots. We need to be sure we are giving cross-field spots that are the same. If you do not have a spot, walk away. That is better than the Umpire trying to decide which official is correct.

We have seen some leaping of the shield action in recent games. Without the focus of the rule change, our Referees have gotten a little lax in watching for this illegal action. Remember, no defensive player in the tackle box may try to block a punt by leaving his feet to leap “directly” over an opponent. If the player jumps straight up, or attempts to leap through a gap, there is no foul. That said, remember that it is a safety foul. Rule 9-1-11-c.

I would like to congratulate the new officials who joined us to officiate college football this year. Some of you were assigned games; others will need to wait until next season. I encourage each of you to take advantage of the excellent training online, officiating camps, and clinics available to you. For the veterans, your experience and knowledge was helpful. Continue to stay in shape, watch video, and improve your game. Playoff and bowl game assignments will be released by Tuesday night, November 17. Those selections are an imperfect science, but we do our best.

Many of the officials who started with us will be assigned bowl games and playoff assignments. The first two that have been announced are Gary Reed and Eric McNally. They will be at the Bayou Classic. This nationally-televised game will feature Grambling vs. Southern University. Congrats to them, and to all of the SCFA officials and alumni who receive post-season assignments.

Last, and most important, THANK YOU to all of you for your hard work and dedication to our student-athletes, and this great game.

Rich Kollen
Director of Football Operations
Southern California Football Association

2015 SCCFOA - Southern California Collegiate Football Officials Association