Saturday, July 27, 2013

Why I Love Officiating

After not officiating for a while, I snuck in a couple of nights of officiating this week including tonight (Friday).  The first game was a consolation game followed by two playoff semi-finals games in an adult league that I play in.  The league is divided by divisions and I was working the "Bronze" (aka "4th Division") tonight with my friend.  

My friend is a former high school official.  In fact, it was him and other friend that encouraged me to join the high school officiating group back in 2002.  Alas, while I stuck around for the past decade, both my friends dropped out after a couple of years. 

The first game tonight was a consolation game followed by two playoff semi-final games.  The consolation game was relatively laid back.  In fact, it was two teams from the same organization that were playing each other.  The teams did not play each other in the regular season (there are two divisions) but were obviously familiar with each other.  

The second game was a battle of the top seed in the division versus what looked like the lowest seed.   The top seed was HUGE (three kids topping 6'2") with some quick guards.  The lower seed wasn't anywhere close in terms of height and athletic ability.  But they knew how to play and they gave the top seed all the could handle for 40 minutes.  In the end, the top seed had just a little bit more and pulled away for the victory.  

An interesting situation happened during this game which I will need to look into more.  A player from the top seed took a shot and MISSED horribly.  In fact, the player shot from the baseline and the ball cleared but landed on the floor without touching anything.  My friend called a violation but I wasn't 100% sure so I chose not to overrule him.  We talked about this afterward.  I told my friend that since the ball went right over the backboard and didn't touch anything before hitting the floor, it was likely ok.  I personally would have let it go.   Overall, it didn't impact the game though it was an interesting lesson to take in. 

The third and final game of the night was the best game I've seen in this summer league this year.  It seemed like a battle of the 2nd / 3rd seeds (though I don't think the setup was this way).  Both teams had some good guard play though one team had a little more size.  The game was even throughout and went into TWO OVERTIMES before the bigger team prevailed 52-48.  Lots of intensity and I had to calm the players and coaches a bit during the game.  

While this was the "Bronze" division, it didn't mean the games were not good.  It was fun to work and a reminder of why I stay involved in officiating.  It's not about the money but a chance to see and work some good basketball games. 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Back On The Court / May Not Be Back For A While

I hadn't officiated many games since the end of May.  I worked a few youth tournaments but otherwise had disappeared off the officiating map.  A part of it was I had been busy and booked with some things.

The other thing was a little more personal.  I am dealing with some family things and something had to be sacrificed.  At the moment, I've chosen to sacrifice basketball officiating.  While I greatly enjoy being on the court, I just cannot commit to working any games.

However, thanks for a few of the basketball leagues I play in, I got a chance to officiate.  I worked two wednesday ago, last night and will work again this Friday night.  It was good to get on the court even if it was on a volunteer basis.

Of course, this leads to yet another issue I have to make a decision on.  Will I officiate during the upcoming high school basketball season?  I took a leave for the 2011-2012 season for a different reason but returned last season.  I personally hate to take another leave but circumstances may force me to make that choice.  I am not 100% what I am going to do at the moment but will decide in the next month or so.

There is an upside.  I won't be completely giving up officiating.   I stopped officiating youth basketball toward the end of May to deal with my family things.  However, things have settled where I can squeeze in a few games if I wanted to when the next youth season rolls around.  In fact, I may squeeze in some youth volleyball as well.

I am fortunate to have options and for that I am thankful.  I'll continue to blog on any interesting things that come up though.