The drama of filling referee slots for weekend games

Following on from yesterday’s NorCal email about respect for referees I wanted to share the below background that very few coaches and parents are probably aware of. There is a LOT of behind-the-scenes volunteer work every week by referee assignors such as Tibor, Dana, Allen, Scott, and Filippo to make sure games can happen as scheduled. Because of the big shortage of referees many referees often volunteer to officiate 3 to 6 games per day on weekends. That’s a total of up to a dozen games per weekend. My wife has threatened divorce on more than one occasion already ;-). Here’s a sampling of typical emails from the referee assignors in one area (just MVLA/Red Star/Force/SASC/West Valley, not the entire Bay Area): Wednesday evening: “This is a blast email to all referees: We have a number of open slots for this weekend, so can you please log in and pick up a game or two in addition to what you have

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Message from NorCal about referee abuse

The following message was emailed to all clubs, teams, coaches, players, and parents today: The NorCal Board of Directors is concerned about the issue of sportsmanship and, specifically, referee abuse within soccer. Quite simply, it is unacceptable for any coach, player or parent to verbally or physically abuse referees, players or any other person involved in a soccer match – or at any other time for that matter! Although the vast majority of games take place without incident, in the first three weeks of the season, NorCal Premier Soccer has seen three cases of referee assault referred to US Club Soccer. Last weekend alone, we saw 19 red cards for violent conduct or abusive behavior. Following this uptick in referee abuse and red card reports, we have moved swiftly, with US Club Soccer support, to address these incidents in the following manner: The NorCal Board of Directors will be notified immediately about any cases of violent behavior; Clubs, with coaches,

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US Club Soccer (aka NorCal) will implement new U.S. Soccer player development standards in two phases

In contrast to Cal North/CYSA, US Club Soccer will make changes in two phases: transition from school-year based (Aug 1 – July 31) to calendar-year based (Jan 1 – Dec 31) by Aug 1, 2016. small-sided games, which also includes changes to field and goal sizes, by Aug 1, 2017. If able to do so, member clubs are encouraged to implement these initiatives prior to the mandates coming into full effect. Player pass cards will continue to be issued based on an Aug 1 to July 31 competition season.