The only thing I agree with, below, is your last sentence. It's my Thesis, in response to Stag.
The rest of what you post is somewhat off the mark.
First, to gain confidence, young refs need to work at getting TLOG down cold. And guess what - you cannot do this by merely reading the book, and reading SOCREF postings. You Must do games, lots of them - and make Lots of Mistakes.
I have said it a dozen times here: there are two reasons I believe I'm a pretty good ref. (1) I have made more mistakes than most refs I know - No Lie! (of course, that's due to doing some 200 games a year, for many, many years). and (2) I Know For A Fact, tomorrow I'll be a better ref than today, because I know I'm not as good as I should be, and I Work at getting better, every day (ask Jim Gordon, Jim Allen, Wayne Wray, Dan Heldman and others, how often each year they have to clobber me!!!)
This is why I will Forever disagree with Stag. Young refs can start doing games with a 75 percent score, and ref for years without mastering TLOG (by that, I mean scoring 96+ consistently). In that case, they will always misapply TLOG - and unfortunately, since coaches do not read TLOG (if you do not believe this, ask Jim MacQueen, Ivan Mann, or a host of others here, who also have participated in the SOCCoach web chat space.) But these same ignorant (of TLOG - not as humans!) officials, whose objective often (mostly?) is to get their kids a win, present the young ref with way too many problems, when they approach them during games.
Your first point is really meaningless - how can one become a ref without knowing one has the authority? The problem for young refs is learning How to USE it not in knowing whether or not they Have it!
Your second point is, to put it bluntly, an unnecessary, unwarranted, and untrue slam against assignors. Assignors do not keep their jobs by dumping on refs, in favor of coaches; quite the contrary (and we do not need to go there!)
There is one other thing, in addition to working on getting TLOG down cold, that young refs must have - that's fitness. We all need to work on this, some more than others; but it's a common problem (as Dan Friedel just posted, earlier today). The fact is, coaches of all ages and competencies will cut more slack to newer refs, when they see these people busting their ass trying to stay with play. And as Skipper told you last summer at USACUP, the best refs cannot sell calls, when they're all made from center circle.
So, if someone wants to begin reffing, after I get them theu an entry-level course, I'd stress they should regularly work at improving their knowledge of the Laws (clinics; asking experienced refs whenever they work with them; re-reading the book; reviewing SOCREF posts, as you do; seeing pro games, etc.) Also, I'd encourage them to continue working at getting fitter, because, when on a field, coaches, palyers and parents see: (1) how we Look; how we Move; and how we decide. Why give them more reasons to attack # 3, when a little care with ## 1 and 2 will spiff us up?
>>> Chad Henson <[log in to unmask]> 05/16/01 12:19 PM >>>
For young refs to have confidence, they (we) have to know 3 things:
1. That they have the authourity.
2. That they will be backed up by other refs and the State Association.
3. That others are going thru the same thing and having the guts to do
something about it shows character - not weakness.
Most know #1, especially after they see someone else deal with the problem.
I think that the assignors tendency to appease the coaches keeps #2 from
being a reality. And the humiliation attached to a confrontation with a
coach or calling the refere over and forcing one will, at a younger level,
keep that referee from wanting to deal with it.
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