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Refs cheating the kids out of time, what to do?

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Shamrocks
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The past two games the team I help with had a 30-0 and 24-0 half-time leads.  In both games, all different refs, they cut time off without telling us or addressing in in the 2nd half. 

Saturday night was the worst.  We were up 24-0 at the half, 2 picks for TDs, one punt return for a TD and three 2-point kicks. 

They fumbled on their 15, we ran 3 off tackle plays and scored with our 3 string WR, not even a RB.  We let a lineman who had a birthday run the extra point and he was stopped.  We played a base D, no blitz or attacking, a simple cover 2 filled with subs. 

Two 12 minute quarters were done in 20 minutes total time.  We actually timed it from kickoff, they took 2 timeouts and we took one, there was an injury timeout and some incomplete passes and runners knocked out of bounds.  Our HC went to complain and I pulled him back and addressed two of the refs I have worked with for over 10 years.  Their reply was, the game was out of reach and we don't want to let the score get run up or someone get hurt.  I explained to them that we had one score on with our  offense and that was with our 3rd string WR who ran in from 2 yards out after they fumbled on their own 15! 

My issue with this is, we have kids that practice all week for a game and to see their playing time get cut short, possibly 10 minutes of actual game time and maybe 15-20 plays isn't fair to the kids, on both teams.

Thoughts?


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Vince148
(@vince148)
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Many leagues have running clocks when the point differential reaches a certain point and that could vary from league to league. Some could be 24, others could be 36.


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GP
 GP
(@gpenn44)
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Happens to us all the time. When I post our stats in the results page, Dave Cisar is always shocked at how few plays from scrimmage we get in our blowout wins.

We don't have running clock rules in our league but the refs seem to take it upon themselves to implement them. This past Saturday was prob the worst ever - still working on film to get a count on plays from scrimmage but it was ridiculous - they were clearly running it from the opening kickoff (we were still up 38-0 at half, subbing HEAVILY even in first half - which was also the final score bc we went above & beyond to NOT run the score up - ran Beast with backup linemen the entire 2nd half).

We are addressing it at the league mtg tonight for the same reasons. We're clearly not into running the score up (even with the running clock we could have won 80-0 if we went that route) but we have over 30 kids and when we come away with less than 50 total plays from scrimmage in a 48 minute game (again working on final tally but def below 50 this week), the math makes absolutely no sense and the kids are getting cheated.

"Motivation is simple. You eliminate those who are not motivated." - Lou Holtz


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gumby_in_co
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My issue with this is, we have kids that practice all week for a game and to see their playing time get cut short, possibly 10 minutes of actual game time and maybe 15-20 plays isn't fair to the kids, on both teams.

Completely agree.

Thoughts?

It's not up to the refs to "even the playing field" with selective calls or to decide what's best for either team. They are paid to know the rules/procedures and to execute the game in a professional manner.  Unfortunately, all youth sports seem to be in the "beggars can't be choosers" category. Ref associations don't seem to be in too much of a hurry to self police.

When in doot . . . glass and oot.


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CoachDP
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Thoughts?

Kids want to play.  Slaughter Rules, running clocks, etc. were invented to assuage coaches' egos and hurt feelings.  When I was a kid, we wanted to PLAY.  In school, during PE we wanted to PLAY.  Never grew up with a Slaughter Rule or even heard of one until I began coaching youth ball.  When they changed the Slaughter Rule in our league from 35 to 28 points making it EASIER for us to hit Slaughter quicker, the argument was that COACHES would rather lose by 28 than 35.

Hate the rules, but they do it like that even in high school.

--Dave

"The Greater the Teacher, the More Powerful the Player."

The Mission Statement: "I want to show any young man that he is far tougher than he thinks, that he can accomplish more than what he dreamed and that his work ethic will take him wherever he wants to go."

#BattleReady newhope


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coachmiket
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Had this happen one year when I was an AC.  The game was over before it started.  Last week of the regular season, cold NE Ohio weather, freezing rain on and off and it was a night game, so the temps were low.  We were playing at another team's high school stadium and we couldn't find the opposing team anywhere prior to weigh ins.  Finally found out they were all just sitting around inside the building staying warm!

They came out for weigh ins, looked at us and you could tell they were finished.

Our first play of the game we ended up running 3 times for a TD, but we had a motioning WR called for illegal motion (turning up field to crack the end) on each rep. Our HC finally just decided to run power and that scored too. 4 td's and only one counted!

At the start of the second half we noticed the clock was continuously running (no such rule existed in our league, it's only 9 minute quarters). We asked the ref why and he said the other team asked for it.  I think it was like 24 or 30-0 at halftime.

We politely talked to the refs and explained that we had a big roster (25 kids), we had no intentions of running the score up, but we felt our backups and reserves and mpp's deserved to be on the field without being cheated by the clock.  Refs talked to the other team and they agreed to use regular clock rules.

I think being polite, calm and just explaining things without sounding ticked off helped things go our way in that argument.


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GP
 GP
(@gpenn44)
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Kids want to play.  Slaughter Rules, running clocks, etc. were invented to assuage coaches' egos and hurt feelings. 

Amen. As I said, we were up 38-0 at half Saturday. The final score was 38-0.

In the handshake line, their coach (knowing we went above & beyond to keep the score at 38-0 instead of continuing to score / demoralize them) pulled me in and said "thanks for taking care of my kids, Coach." Of course I was gracious and said "no problem, coach" but was really thinking 'maybe if you actually coached these kids you wouldn't need the opposing coach to be the one "taking care of" (your) kids.'

Saddest part was they had some nice athletes! Just quite literally THE MOST poorly coached team I have ever seen.

"Motivation is simple. You eliminate those who are not motivated." - Lou Holtz


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Vince148
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A few years ago, I coached in a league that had a rule that the HC could be suspended for a game if their team went over the 30 point differential. Completely ridiculous. I agree, I think it's more to protect the coach's ego. The kids usually have no idea about the score. They only know that they either won or lost.


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patriotsfatboy1
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We have the issue with coaches getting suspended for running the score up.  We have Hudl league-wide, so it is a little easier to explain situations if you score while in mercy.  You can just point to who you had playing at the time.  If you had your starters in and running up the score, you have some 'splainin to do.

As far as refs cheating the kids out of time, it happens all the time.  In our league, you can pay for a ref to run the clock.  It costs you for the extra guy, but supposedly you get more plays in as a result because everyone can see the clock running (or not running).  Played a game yesterday where they had a ref on the clock.  We got in the same exact number of plays we have been getting in for every other game this year. 

I did call timeout with about 45 seconds left in the game because I wanted to show my kids how to run victory formation.  I felt bad, but I am superstitious and would not want to do it in practice.  I asked for a 30 second time out to show the kids what do to  and we kneeled down once for the win.  I thanked the refs and the other coach for their patience, but I needed to teach my kids something. 


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GP
 GP
(@gpenn44)
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I felt bad, but I am superstitious and would not want to do it in practice.

Preparing to win is against your superstition? Glad I'm not superstitious.

Victory is the last play we rep in practice every week as it is how we plan to end games.

IMO pretty tacky to call a timeout in that situation - realize you didn't do it to show them up but still, install it in practice.

"Motivation is simple. You eliminate those who are not motivated." - Lou Holtz


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patriotsfatboy1
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IMO pretty tacky to call a timeout in that situation - realize you didn't do it to show them up but still, install it in practice.

I didn't want to do it, but the other coach was a d!ck to me before the game. 😛


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Coach Brad
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I did call timeout with about 45 seconds left in the game because I wanted to show my kids how to run victory formation.  I felt bad, but I am superstitious and would not want to do it in practice.  I asked for a 30 second time out to show the kids what do to  and we kneeled down once for the win.  I thanked the refs and the other coach for their patience, but I needed to teach my kids something.

We had our first win of the year yesterday, and when the ref said it was last play, I told the ref we will take a knee, shouted it across the field so EVERYONE knew, and then just yelled at the QB to "take a knee" after the snap.


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patriotsfatboy1
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We had our first win of the year yesterday, and when the ref said it was last play, I told the ref we will take a knee, shouted it across the field so EVERYONE knew, and then just yelled at the QB to "take a knee" after the snap.

That might not have worked for us.  As I started with "we are going to take a knee" and here is where I want the wings to line up, several of my linemen then said, "okay, so we are all going to take a knee on the snap".  I corrected them to avoid some embarrassment.  😀


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Threepwood
(@wettstein)
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I agree, it shouldn't be up to the refs to "adjust" the rules or favor a weaker team to even out the playing field.  There should be some in bias representative from the league at each game to determine if fair play isn't being enforced or if adjustments have to be made to prevent the kids on the weaker team to get hurt physically or emotionally.

Cutting game time does unjustly penalized the better team/players.  Our best players currently are getting less playing time than our subs because on the point differential we are able to create.

There other issue if any positioning or tie breakers will be based off of points at the end of the year.  If there is, we have a big gripe.

I don't know the right answer.  There are coaches out their that will run up the score and won't stop until every kid leaves on a stretcher. 


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Coach Brad
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That might not have worked for us.  As I started with "we are going to take a knee" and here is where I want the wings to line up, several of my linemen then said, "okay, so we are all going to take a knee on the snap".  I corrected them to avoid some embarrassment.  😀

That totally happened to me one time. Thought it was pretty funny actually.


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