SAN DIEGO COUNTY FOOTBALL OFFICIALS ASSOCIATION - THE WEEKLY BULL – October 6, 2021
No Meeting This Week – This week is week #8 of the season and it sure seems to be flying by. More rivalries and more league battles! Keep up your fitness routine, study a rule, talk with your crew chief on the phone, and evaluate your crew’s work from last week. Set your own goal, and set a crew goal!
Attendance and Tests – A link has been sent to all officials who have not recorded a score on their attendance sheets. When you pass the test this time, make sure your score gets recorded on the attendance sheet.
Game Check Weekend is This Week! - This is the week to contribute to our Youth Fund. Can you spare just one of your game checks October 7-9? Our goal is $5,000 or $25 per official. The SDYFF will buy the crew who contributes the most during this weekend a full crew dinner after your game on November 5th, up to $30/official! Strive to be the best, and we’ll take care of your dinner that night! Enter your crew contribution at sdyouthfootballfund.com or hand Mike Downing an envelope at the 10/17 meeting. Remember, we couldn’t fund raise last year so let’s double our efforts in supporting our very own charity!
Golf Tournament – This year’s golf tournament will take place on Wednesday, November 3rd at Riverwalk GC in Mission Valley. Shotgun start at 11:00am. $125 covers golf, cart, and lunch. $145 gets you all that plus drink tickets and a chance to win lots of great prizes at the raffle. You can play as a crew, foursome, or play as an individual. Golfers of all abilities and guests are welcome. Contact Ed Blick, Mike Downing, or Jake Minger with questions or go on-line to check out the details and register at www.SDYouthFootballFund.org
Banquet Stories – Our Banquet will be on November 3rd and we need stories. See Bob Hood or email him your video or story of our fun-loving mistakes from the 2021 season. We need a few more!! Also, remember to attend the banquet as you’ve already paid for your dinner with your 2021 registration!
Hoodies – It’s going to get cooler so we may start seeing hoodies. As of now they are not being considered an adornment, so they are legal. They are worn at the player’s own risk. If the defender uses it to pull him down a runner wearing a hoodie that is sticking out, there can be no penalty, and horse collar fouls would not be possible.
Communication – “Silence Can’t be Quoted” – Some of what we say can be overheard by others. Example this week of a crew chief working the sideline of a JV game prior to the varsity game, talking about the other team’s coaches. Problem was that he AD and an assistant from the other team were visiting on that sideline and overheard the comments. “Silence can’t be quoted.” Be careful of what you say and be always working to further develop what you say in certain situations based upon the response you get. If the coach says something like, “OK, thanks.” Then you probably said it correctly. Remember that and use it again.
Communication with Players and Coaches – Communicating with players is like communicating with the coaching staffs. What you say to players is going to be repeated to the coaches. So comments like, “you’re not getting held, you’re getting beat” or “it was a 5 yard loss anyway we’re not going to call holding” or “I'm not calling that unless my grandma can see the foul” does nothing for the game and makes us look quite bad. I have no defense for these types of comments to players or even coaches. Please respond with facts, or the rule, or “I saw the block and it was close but legal.” “I was focused on other action on that play, I’ll watch for that foul.” “Coach we just saw the play differently.” “I hear you, I understand.” “What did you see?” Remember, positive and proper communication starts as we arrive at the school. If we get to a difficult situation and then want to establish strong, positive responses, it’s too late. Be professional from the time you park your car – through the entire JV game – pregame of the varsity contest – at all times during the game – and post-game. Be a Mike Weseloh when it comes to communication!!!
Game Clock – Reminder, at the beginning of our dead ball routine we must all check the game clock for accuracy. When we are questioned about game time (maybe the clock continued to run when it wasn’t supposed to) and we don’t have an answer we lose our credibility with fans, players and coaches. Much of this happens inside of 5 minutes in the half or the game, but you can’t just turn on and off this responsibility. You have to do it each and every snap. Finish observing the action of the players at the end of each play, then a quick look at the clock to check its status. Have a plan each week on how you will communicate with the clock operator so we can quickly reset the game clock if necessary. Resetting the game clock can demonstrate our thoroughness and our professionalism.
Game Clocks and Tenths and Hundredths of a Second – Please have the school turn off the partial seconds display on a clock. It is only fair that each school play their games under the same circumstances which are that game clocks only read seconds, not portions of a second. I’ve consulted with professionals who state that the feature can be turned off.
Who Fouled First – FST or DOF? - We have all had this, and there are times at all levels of football the officials can spend quite a bit of time trying to get it right. Did the offensive team False Start or Defense Encroach first? R and U can have a flag down for FST, and can offer input. Encroachment is generally a LOS official’s call. This is a “Big Picture” call that HL and LJ need to have all the information whenever possible. Focusing on the leading edge of helmet of the defense will get the Encroachment. Rely on your field of vision to get any offensive movement - FST. But some times the WR challenges us with his alignment and we can’t comfortably move to the defense’s side of the neutral zone. In that case you have to do the opposite and use your wide vision to get the defensive encroachment. Talk to our expert LOS officials and get their best tips.
Sideline Warnings – Use them! There is no yardage attached to this infraction of the rules. Throw your flag making it clear that something bad has happened. Even the crowd will know the sideline is interfering with safe play. Then if you have to administer a 5-yard penalty, I guarantee you will get their cooperation. Remember, coaches who choose to go out on the field and demonstrate their dissatisfaction with a call must be assessed a 15-yard UNS. No questions asked. They know this is the rule and this is what the CIF supports! No big demonstrations on the field…ever.
Separating Players – Keep hustling in to separate players which allows the game to flow more smoothly by preventing penalties. The observers are indicating that we’re doing well in this area. Keep it up.
Measurements – If you have them, referee is to face the pressbox when making initial judgment and signaling to the pressbox. If short, you face the hashmarks when walking the ball and chains to reset the ball at the hash marks. Everyone needs to know and perform their jobs or it can look awkward, to say the least.
Players Properly Equipped – We are winning the war on illegal equipment, don’t give up the little battles each week!
Catch/Recovery – Be slow! Past videos have shown officials quickly judging possession and the ball subsequently continuing to be loose. These plays call for demonstrated control of the ball.
Disciplining Officials – The SDCDOA will not discipline officials by removing them from their scheduled games for errors in judgment or implementation of the rules. A mistake like that must be learned from and removing officials from the game would take away a critical opportunity to learn and show improvement. The Association does have the right to implement progressive discipline should a member’s character and/or behavior become a concern for the association, schools, teams and players.
Refreshments – If you are thirsty at halftime of any game, be prepared to pay for your halftime refreshments. They are not part of the game fee or our contract with the CIF. So, PLEASE, don’t assume that you get refreshments. Comments like, “Make sure it’s one of the cold Gatorades” can easily be interpreted as arrogant and demanding. Remember, these funds are used to pay for school athletics and we are being offered something that is taking money from their profits. Thank you!
Food For Thought –
- A 1/10 from the B-26, run to the B-12, where player A88 is down by rule. When A88 gets up he taunts Team B and is penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct. Immediately after the play, and before the penalty is assessed, the chains move from their previous location.
Ruling: The play ended beyond the line-to-gain so Team A is awarded a first down. The unsportsmanlike penalty is enforced as a dead ball foul and the chains moving are of no consequence because a first down has been earned on the play. The dead ball UNS is penalized back 15-yards where it will be 1/10 at the B-27.
- A1 takes the snap and fakes a handoff to A2, then hands the ball to A3. B3 bites on the fake and attempts to tackle A2. The impact causes the helmet to come completely off A2's head. A3 advances 10 yards and is downed. (2-32-14; 4-2-2k)
Ruling: The ball remains live when A2's helmet comes off.
- After fair-catching a punt, team A snaps from team B's 45 yardline. A1 runs for 10 yards. During the down, B2 grasped and pulled A1's facemask. With the ball at team BS 20 yardline, team A wants to attempt a field goal. (4-1-2c; 6-5-4; 8-4-1a; 4-3-7; 6-5-4)
Ruling: The attempt can be a free kick or scrimmage kick.