WHEN to become a Referee?

Discussion in 'Referee' started by MrZedd, Sep 18, 2003.

  1. MrZedd

    MrZedd New Member

    Jul 18, 2003
    I haven't seen this addressed and saw someone mention their son has reff'ed since age 9 (on the G-9 Thread). My eldest is now 9 and mentioned reffing recently. What are your thoughts?

    Thanks!
     
  2. nsa

    nsa Member+

    New England Revolution; Boston Breakers
    United States
    Feb 22, 1999
    Notboston, MA
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    My son was a 4 months shy of his 10th b'day when he took the Associate Referee course. A 10 y.o. buddy of his took the course at the same time. Two years later they took the Gr. 8 course. His friend has stopped ref'ing, but my son continues.

    It is the mental and emotional maturity that makes a difference, not simply a chronological age. However, Massachusetts has set an age limit of 15 for the Gr. 8 course, unless a referee has a year or more of experience as a Gr. 11 or 9. Most Gr. 11 candidates have been at least 10 y.o. (or close :) ).

    With the move to the Gr. 9, Mass. has set a lower age limit of 11 y.o. ( a move that I argued against). 11 is a great age to do U10 matches, but a lot of towns need refs to do their intramural games at U6 and U8. Locally, I run younger kids through a two hour whistle clinic and we let 'em loose on the 3v3 and 4v4 matches. But they can't get their badge until they turn 11.

    Check with your local youth soccer club to find out what their needs are. One of the reasons that we lose a lot of young refs is because they don't get as many assignments as they had expected. As an assignor, I want two age groups between the ref and the teams. IOW, a U14 would do U10, a U16 would do U12, etc. A 10 y.o. ref would be doing U6 or U8 intramural games.
     
  3. MPJ334

    MPJ334 New Member

    Dec 19, 2001
    Chelsea,New York, NY
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    :) i understand your desire for the age difference, but i would ask to be an exception. i want a chevron-badge before i'm 30. i'd need to do a 90-min at toward age 17 or right when i turn 17...and that's for the passing assessment; i'd need to haev been doing them for a while before i'm assessed. but then again, i'm an exception, not the rule (and modest, too);)
     
  4. Gary V

    Gary V Member+

    Feb 4, 2003
    SE Mich.
    We have an informal rule of being 13 to take the Grade 8 course. I think that's as much the instructor's preference for classroom control as much as it is for what is needed on the field. Some ask to take the course before 13, and it is usually granted if they will be 13 by the time the next season starts. Instructors also have the option of accepting younger kids, but class size limits may prevent that. We've just started offering Grade 9 courses so I don't know what age limit is there.

    Our current assignor and her son took the old Grade 10 course when he was possibly still 11. Both have upgraded to 8's; she's taken the assignor's course as well. He is now in HS and is an excellent AR - but won't take centers ... sigh. (Neither will my son.)

    Our assignor requires that refs be older than the age group they are centering for, or at least the same age to be AR. They work rec games to get a lot of experience before moving to comp games.
     
  5. ProfZodiac

    ProfZodiac Moderator
    Staff Member

    Jan 17, 2003
    Boston, MA
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I did intramurals for 2 years, and got my Grade 8 at 12. My brother is a Grade 9 (or 11, not sure which) and is 13.
     
  6. nsa

    nsa Member+

    New England Revolution; Boston Breakers
    United States
    Feb 22, 1999
    Notboston, MA
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Go to work for a certain oil company and you can have a chevron badge now. :)

    PZ took the Gr. 8 course before Mass. put on the age limit. The age limit in Mass. is enforced by the ARA that runs the course, not the instructors. Personally, as an instructor and assignor, I have seen 12 y.o. kids that do very well in the class and on the field and some adults that cannot hack it at either.

    To MPJ's point about age restrictions on matches (and I understand the humour behind your statement), I use that guideline for the first two or three years until I have seen how a referee handles the games and the reporting responsibilities. For that matter, I wouldn't start a first year adult referee at anything over U14, having them do lines at the older ages before taking a middle. Some, particularly folks who are playing or have played, get moved up in age faster.
    My son much prefers being AR, too. I think that he does a fine job at both and his assessment at State Cups concurred. Is part of it a general tendency for teenagers to avoid being responsible for anything? ;)
     
  7. ajreferee

    ajreferee New Member

    May 30, 2003
    NE IL
    If you are registering and employing children as referees, please be careful about Chil Labor Laws. In Illinois and other states the employing persons under the age of 18 is regulated.

    Depending on the actual age the hours, time of day and even if they may work is restricted.

    AJ
     
  8. colins1993

    colins1993 Member

    Mar 1, 2001
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Max age to ref

    Well I'm at the other end of the rainbow here. I'll turn 49 next month and really just started doing USSF games 2 years ago at the behest of a former teamate/friend.

    Actually I've been doing parochial games (Catholic school league games) for 10 years and never really had the time to get into the USSF ref program because I was too busy playing myself and coaching my own kids.

    I consider myself fit and a serious student/follower of the domestic and international game and have won two national tiltes with my club.

    Anyway, my question to this board is should my playing experience and knowledge of the game count for "something" towards me moving up the ref grade level or will I have to do the obligatory X amount of U-12 games etc. before I can get upgraded?

    Is there a hard and fast rule on this or is it just a guideline?

    I seems to me that the USSF would want ex-players to take up reffing.

    THX
     
  9. kevbrunton

    kevbrunton New Member

    Feb 27, 2001
    Edwardsburg, MI
    Club:
    Chicago Fire
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Re: Max age to ref

    No, there is not a hard and fast rule. Probably the hardest thing to learn as a referee is a) recognition of fouls and b) when to stop the game for those fouls. As a player, you have a significant leg up on someone like myself who wasn't a player. You should have a feel for that stuff and you just need to learn all the laws -- things like the technical things that players generally don't care about.

    As for a maximum age, I know one individual who is 70 and is still refereeing U17 Division 1 Premier league games in Michigan. He has stayed fit and active and he is still effective doing games. I know a couple of guys who are in their 60's and still fit enough to referee college games.

    So stay in shape and be fortunate enough to avoid injuries and you can referee a long time.
     
  10. nsa

    nsa Member+

    New England Revolution; Boston Breakers
    United States
    Feb 22, 1999
    Notboston, MA
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Re: Max age to ref

    Fast-tracking for upgrade is typically reserved for younger referees and is at the whim and wisdom of the state referee committee.

    If by "upgrade" you mean assignment to older age groups and higher levels of competition, that will usually depend upon your local assignors. Ask them (politely) to observe you if you think they are ignoring you simply due to age and time-in-grade.
     
  11. colins1993

    colins1993 Member

    Mar 1, 2001
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    THX kevbruton and NSA.

    Well I certainly know what a serious foul is and when to "play on" (and card the offender later) and when to stop the match immediately and deal with it.

    I have been doing a few college matches in the middle this year as well whereas last year I was "on the line" exclusively. I forgot to mention that initially.

    So far I have sensed no hint of me being ignored due to my age and that's a good thing. I guess my advantage now is that some of the current coaches know me from either playing against me or with me on the same team in the past and there "appears" to be more respect shown. Or at the minimum they are giving me the benefit of the doubt on my foul recognition because they know that I know the game.

    I guess I just need to decide how much time I want to devote to my new hobby. (and I mean no disrespect to the other refs by using the word "hobby")
     

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