Monday, October 4, 2010

Upgrade Kudos - With a Twist

Many folks do not recognize the complexity of the "machine" behind the modern game. While I will not opine about the complex inner workings of the player side of FIFA, its national associations (e.g. US Soccer), State and local associations, I want to shed some light on the refereeing side a bit.

Ubiquitous to our lexicon is the term "referee". We are very familiar with who they are and generally their role inside the soccer field. Beyond that, there are a host of other actors that include referee administrators, referee assessors, referee mentors, and yes, referee instructors. It is this last group I will expand briefly on here.

Similar to referees within US Soccer, instructors too carry a grade such as instructor, state instructor, and national instructor. There are more, but you take my point I'm sure. Also similar, are requirements for grade retention, and upgrade such as classes given, and training received.

Many of these folks are active, or inactive former referees and have experience, sometimes a tremendous amount, with the game. Even with that experience, there is a fairly ridged training regime that goes into being an instructor, even to do so at a local level, for new referees. To upgrade to a state instructor takes hours of practical, and course work to learn how to shape the minds of referees at higher and higher levels. This requires not only a thorough understanding of the game, but also empathy for the plight of such a referee, combined with a healthy does of detailing "Law 18".

Recently there are two individuals I would like to recognize for their dedicated service to the instructor core (also noting their involvement as referees, assessors, and mentors), and congratulate them on their recent accomplishments.

Please join me in congratulating Peter Johnson and Peter Robinson for their recent advance to State Instructor. I continue to look forward to their work in turning out the quality referees of the future, and working with each of them along the way.

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