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Restrictions on College Football Officials: How Much is Too Much?

Updated: Saturday, August 3 2013, 10:47 PM CDT
In football, the best officials are almost invisible. If they're perfect, or rather if fans think they're perfect, officials could go four full quarters without even being noticed. However, today's 24 hour news cycle and social media craze has put a hold on any anonymity college football officials once had.

"Class and professionalism is required always not just while you're on the field," said Steve Shaw, Southeastern Conference Coordinator of Football Officials.

Shaw, a 21 year veteran official, prohibits his SEC crew members from having a personal Facebook or Twitter account.

"That may seem a little harsh but if you want to be an SEC official, that's really where we need to be," Shaw told KEYE TV sports.

The Big 12 Conference does allow its officials to engage in social media, but Conference Coordinator of Officials Walt Anderson says the league implores using good judgement online, and that includes family and friends.

"If you've got a Facebook account, it better be very generic and your family needs to understand the sensitivity that's involved there," Anderson said.

But what about connections that predate social networks? How much is too much when it comes to an association between an official and a conference school? For both the Big 12 and SEC, it's black and white.

If an official has any financial commitment to a school, ranging from booster clubs to business contracts to a son or daughter's tuition, he cannot call a game involving that school. If an SEC official player for or with a current SEC head coach, that official cannot be assigned to that school's games. In the Big 12, if an official played for a current Big 12 school, while he can officiate that team's non-conference schedule, he is not permitted to call a Big 12 game involving his former team.

To stay completely transparent, the SEC even goes as far as to enforce wardrobe requirements for officials' family members attending the game. While at the stadium, they are not allowed to wear the school colors of either team involved in the game their family member is officiating.

"We want to avoid any type of potential conflict," says Shaw.

So on Saturdays, officials are not only enforcing rules, they are abiding by them. Because while the actual game may be just 60 minutes long, the spotlight on the refs outlasts any overtime.Restrictions on College Football Officials: How Much is Too Much?


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Scores & Schedules

March 05, 2015 08:10 GMT

SPRING TRAINING

Wednesday's Games

Philadelphia 3, N.Y. Yankees 1

Toronto 4, Pittsburgh 1

Detroit 5, Baltimore 4

N.Y. Mets 8, Atlanta 2

Cleveland 4, Cincinnati 2

Seattle 4, San Diego 3, 10 innings

Oakland 9, San Francisco 2

Kansas City 13, Texas 2

Chicago White Sox 6, L.A. Dodgers 4

Arizona 6, Colorado 2

Thursday's Games

N.Y. Yankees vs. Pittsburgh at Bradenton, Fla., 1:05 p.m.

Atlanta vs. Detroit at Lakeland, Fla., 1:05 p.m.

Baltimore (ss) vs. Tampa Bay at Port Charlotte, Fla., 1:05 p.m.

St. Louis vs. Miami at Jupiter, Fla., 1:05 p.m.

Philadelphia vs. Houston at Kissimmee, Fla., 1:05 p.m.

Texas vs. Kansas City at Surprise, Ariz., 3:05 p.m.

L.A. Dodgers vs. Chicago White Sox at Glendale, Ariz., 3:05 p.m.

Chicago Cubs (ss) vs. San Francisco at Scottsdale, Ariz., 3:05 p.m.

San Diego vs. Seattle at Peoria, Ariz., 3:05 p.m.

Cleveland vs. Cincinnati at Goodyear, Ariz., 3:05 p.m.

Oakland vs. Chicago Cubs (ss) at Mesa, Ariz., 3:05 p.m.

Milwaukee vs. L.A. Angels at Tempe, Ariz., 3:10 p.m.

Colorado vs. Arizona at Scottsdale, Ariz., 3:10 p.m.

N.Y. Mets vs. Washington at Viera, Fla., 5:05 p.m.

Boston vs. Minnesota at Fort Myers, Fla., 7:05 p.m.

Toronto vs. Baltimore (ss) at Sarasota, Fla., 7:05 p.m.

NBA

Wednesday's Games

Phoenix 105, Orlando 100

Indiana 105, New York 82

Cleveland 120, Toronto 112

Boston 85, Utah 84

Charlotte 115, Brooklyn 91

New Orleans 88, Detroit 85

Oklahoma City 123, Philadelphia 118, OT

Memphis 102, Houston 100

Denver 100, Minnesota 85

Miami 100, L.A. Lakers 94

San Antonio 112, Sacramento 85

Golden State 102, Milwaukee 93

Portland 98, L.A. Clippers 93, OT

Thursday's Games

Oklahoma City at Chicago, 8 p.m.

Dallas at Portland, 10:30 p.m.

NHL

Wednesday's Games

Ottawa 3, Winnipeg 1

Detroit 2, N.Y. Rangers 1, OT

Colorado 3, Pittsburgh 1

Anaheim 3, Montreal 1

Thursday's Games

Calgary at Boston, 7 p.m.

St. Louis at Philadelphia, 7 p.m.

Minnesota at Washington, 7 p.m.

Toronto at Tampa Bay, 7:30 p.m.

Dallas at Florida, 7:30 p.m.

N.Y. Islanders at Nashville, 8 p.m.

Vancouver at Arizona, 9 p.m.

Montreal at Los Angeles, 10:30 p.m.

Longhorn Football Scoreboard

Longhorn Football News

 

KEYE-TV Sports Team


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