Risks & Rewards

May 7, 2012

When my terrific son was a college student, I suggested he get into sports officiating.  You know, to earn some money, stay involved in sports, keep in shape.  His response was “No.  It’s not worth the hassle.”  He didn’t want to subject himself to being criticized, heckled and second-guessed; and I couldn’t blame him.

Which told me then (and I’m reminded often) that sports officials are risk-takers.  Men and women willing to step out and step up.

The best officials make the toughest calls at the tightest times in the competition.  They’re risk-takers in ways mere spectators are not.

And in this so-called “modern world,” where people can sit comfortably at home and comment irritably on everything, and fans can text, tweet and transmit videos instantly, it has never taken more courage to be a sports official than it does today.

Tomorrow evening, for the 33rd consecutive year, the MHSAA hosts a banquet that honors our most veteran MHSAA registered officials.  Officials who have reached the 20-, 30-, 40-, 45- and 50-year service milestones will be recognized; and Rockford’s Lyle Berry will receive the Vern L. Norris Award for a lifetime of grassroots contributions to high school sports officiating in Michigan.

It is one of the rare occasions when we ask officials, referees and judges to step out of the background and into the spotlight.  Without any risk.

Be the Referee: Lacrosse Foul in Critical Scoring Area

By Paige Winne
MHSAA Marketing & Social Media Coordinator

May 21, 2024

Be The Referee is a series of short messages designed to help educate people on the rules of different sports, to help them better understand the art of officiating, and to recruit officials.

Below is this week's segment – Lacrosse Foul in Critical Scoring Area - Listen

We are on the lacrosse field today when a foul is called on the defense inside the critical scoring area with 12 seconds remaining in the third quarter. As the free position is being set up, the game clock expires. What’s the call?

  • Disregard the clock and continue administering the free position and play will commence with a whistle?
  • Reset the game clock to 12 seconds and the free position will commence with a whistle?
  • The free position shall not be administered, and the third quarter is over?

If you said “do not administer the free position,” you are correct. The clock stops for fouls in the CSA in the last two minutes of the second and fourth quarters only – unless there is a 10-goal differential. If time runs out prior to the complete administration of a free position, then it shall not be administered.

Previous Editions

May 14: Avoiding the Tag - Listen
May 7: Baseball Pitch Count - Listen
April 30: Boys Lacrosse Helmets - Listen
April 23: Softball Interference - Listen
April 16: Soccer Red Card - Listen
April 9: Batted Baseball Hits Runner - Listen
March 12: Basketball Replay - Listen
March 5: Hockey Officials - Listen
Feb. 27: Less Than 5 - Listen
Feb. 20: Air Ball - Listen
Feb. 13: Hockey Penalties - Listen
Jan. 30: Wrestling Tiebreakers - Listen
Jan. 23: Wrestling Technology - Listen
Jan. 9: 3 Seconds - Listen
Dec. 19: Unsuspecting Hockey Hits - Listen
Dec. 12: No More One-And-Ones - Listen
Nov. 21: Football Finals Replay - Listen
Nov. 14: Volleyball Unplayable Areas - Listen
Nov. 7: Pass/Kick Off Crossbar - Listen
Oct. 31: Cross Country Interference - Listen
Oct. 24: Soccer Overtime - Listen
Oct. 17: Tennis Spin - Listen
Oct. 10: Blocked Kick - Listen
Oct. 3: Volleyball Double & Lift - Listen
Sept. 26: Registration Process - Listen
Sept. 20: Animal Interference - Listen
Sept. 13: Feet Rule on Soccer Throw-In - Listen
Sept. 6: Volleyball Jewelry - Listen
Aug. 30: Football Rules Similarities - Listen
Aug. 23: Football Rules Differences - Listen