Weekly Bull 10/15/15

Never Re-Assign Yourself – If you are unable to work an assignment, never re-assign the game yourself!  Turn the game back in by declining in arbiter or call Tom.  Only our assignor can assign games. Period!

A View From the Stands (Clock Awareness) – As many of you know, NFL official Tim Podraza has been in the stands watching his son play high school football.  I had a chance to ask him what he’s seen in our officiating this year. Tim is impressed with our work and the points of emphasis are showing on the field.  He says when we throw a flag, for the most part there is a penalty.  We are getting good at staying away from marginal calls.  Tim says we may miss a foul here and there, but when we throw - the foul will show up on film.  Where we are the weakest is with clock awareness (clock running when it shouldn’t – clock not running when it should).  This makes sense when you consider our timers, for the most part, are volunteers who are just helping out!  When asked, Tim told me he checks the clock twice during his dead ball officiating sequence: 1st time just after the ball is dead and the dead ball action stops.  Then he checks the clock about the time the referee would wind or not wind to see if the clock is still doing what it’s supposed to be doing.  TWICE.

Blowing Whistles – From the NCAA  – I hate it when my observations are confirmed J  This is from a major conference supervisor of officials in his weekly bulletin last week:

“We are seeing too many examples of whistles not being appropriately blown when the ball becomes dead.  Whichever official(s) are working the ball, as soon as it becomes dead, you must blow your whistle.  Other officials can then react and echo that whistle if necessary, such as when they are in an area where other players may potentially be involved with dead ball action.  This just helps in keeping the game under control.  Players are coached to “play through the whistle”, and while this never excuses a player from an obvious late hit or piling on penalty, it is from a practical sense necessary for us to let everyone know the play is over, and the best way is for us to blow an appropriate whistle.” 

Notes from Our Observers – We are observing good cross field mechanics and communication between officials.  We’re observing excellent signals by all officials and efficient ball mechanics. Our referees are setting a good game tempo and keeping things moving.  Please continue to work to get teams out quickly following time outs and PATs and FGs.  When both teams are coached well we have very few penalties.  When going to the GL, Flanks need to get to the goal line extended and have a 3 - 4 yard cushion. Don’t stand at the pylon. If it is really close then come in and sell your call.  

This Play is Legal - It is a variation of a swinging gate. Center eligible play where they put #43 at center and on the end of the line. There are 5 players numbered 50-79 on the line of scrimmage and the center is on the end of the line. They throw a pass to the center.

From Andy Castagnola - I just want to thank all the youth and freshman referees who work with our first-year officials for extending our instruction program out onto the field.  You do a great job of giving time and instruction to the rookies and we deeply appreciate the extra time you donate to our newest members.  Thank you for your patience and proper guidance. 

Intentional Grounding – With the referee committed to protecting the QB and ruling on roughing, it is virtually impossible for the referee to see all of the essential elements of an intentional grounding call.  I remind you that it is our mechanics that the flanks, umpire, or even BJ help by either 1) point at an eligible receiver if the receiver was in the area of the incomplete pass, or 2) run to the referee to report that there was no eligible receiver in the area of the incomplete pass.  The referee will accept this information and blend it with his own view of the play and the QB and judge whether we have intentional grounding or not.  Only the referee makes this call!

Illegal Uniforms – I’m hearing from coaches that the uniforms are made in width, not in length, so a player with a slim waist will receive pants that are shorter in length.  I observed first-hand the work that goes into keeping the knees covered and the shoulder pads covered during a game last Friday.  We are all working together to keep the athletes properly protected.  Address any illegal equipment issues with the players directly during the pre-game.  If the problem is extensive, please inform the head coach that you’re trying to prevent problems during the game and you need his help with individual players.  Last week two teams taped knee pads on a few individuals in a manner that made them legal.  Thank you for doing your best with this important safety issue.

Drones – Drones are considered a safety hazard and should not be allowed in the stadium.  We are not going to be the first state that has a crashing drone on the football field!  We are seeing drone shots on PPR so they are up there somewhere.  

Final Election at Next Week’s Meeting – Our next meeting will be next Wednesday October 21 at West Hills.  We will be holding the final elections for our four (4) newest board members.

SDCFOA Youth Fund – White Hats, have a crew member download charity flyer from BJ’s Restaurant.  They will donate 15% of food bill to our charity fund.  PS - Banquet is 11/16 and we need stories for awards and entertainment.

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