Week In Review
The first week is always a little rough as we get back into the swing of football, not only for us refs, but also for the coaches, players and fans too. Although we were missing quite a few refs out there this week, we managed to pull it off successfully. Congrats to all those who showed up and worked single man games and/or were moved around from field to field to cover for missing refs, we will get better, with that said we have a few things we need to focus on this upcoming week.
Please make sure you are visiting this website often, as the games assignments & blog will be posted here the Sunday prior to Thursday and Friday night games. It is your responsibility to notify me ASAP and at least 24 hrs prior to the games, when you cannot show up for your game assignments. Any no call or no show will result in you being removed from all future game assignments until you speak with me and are cleared to be reassigned games. I know life happens and I am a very reasonable person so please don't make a habit of missing games assignments, I don't want to remove anyone from the 2018 Official Roster.
With so many new faces out there I need the more experienced refs to help out with bringing the rookies up to speed. I want to stress please follow the mechanics posted on the website under the 2018 Fall Season page. That means both refs should be in the center of the field slightly offset to either sideline and each is responsible for following up the play that comes toward your sidelines. Believe it or not, it is more important for rookies to be in the correct position before they learn all the right calls. The focus should be that rookies will be on defense primarily until they have mastered it at which time you seasoned refs can decide when they are ready to switch back and forth between offense and defense. I expect the season refs to make all the penalty calls, manage the game and train up their partner. This is why I am trying to partner you with the same person each week so it gets easier and you guys will be able to work together while getting better and better as a team.
Remember out there that this is the first couple of weeks and the players and coaches are trying to get acclimated to game and how you referee, so please lets not throw flags on every single penalty. If at all possible try to coach up the players and coaches with the understanding of the rules and or penalty that should of been called so that we aren't slowing down the game. This doesn't mean you don't call any penalties nor will you ever tell a player, coach or fans "that we don't call penalties in the first few weeks." If a penalty causes a serious disadvantage call it and especially call every penalty that happens to be a safety foul, but lets not call every illegal shift, false start, illegal rush, etc if it doesn't affect the outcome of the play or is insignificant. For Example: the wide receiver barely false starts before the snap and the quarter back hands the ball off and it's a running play, let's tell the coach to remind his players to watch the snap of the ball and not go off the hike call. Also let the player know that they false started and that it is a penalty, this is what I mean by coaching them up. However, if a player false starts and is 3 yards down field before the ball is snapped, you must call a penalty for false start as it is more than obvious that the player violated the rules. I will leave penalty calls to your discretion, let's just make sure if we are calling penalties we are calling it the same for both teams.
Organizing member of iCanReferee & Head Offiicial of Friday Night Lights flag football league. Over 12 years experience with youth flag & tackle football. Major responsibilities are education, on-field training, game assignments, rules interpretation & expanding the organization.