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1 Volleyball Officiating: The Things They Didn’t Tell You 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball: How to Become a Good Official.

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Presentation on theme: "1 Volleyball Officiating: The Things They Didn’t Tell You 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball: How to Become a Good Official."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 Volleyball Officiating: The Things They Didn’t Tell You 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball: How to Become a Good Official

2 2 OVERVIEW In the next 45 minutes, you will hear and see a lot of very good information about officiating volleyball from a top national official who works high school, USA Volleyball and PAVO (NCAA) college women’s volleyball. Jot your questions on your handout for a discussion afterwards of the information on this DVD!

3 3 Making a Commitment toward Becoming a Better VB Official Obtaining an officiating permit for volleyball and renewing it each year is not enough. Schools who contract with you are entitled to quality service which comes, in part, from: studying the rules, including learning new rules; mastering rules to allow timely and practical rule application to what is happening on the court; improvement that comes from openness to receiving feedback, setting goals and engaging in a self- critique process to make weaknesses into strengths.

4 4 Jim Beyer’s DVD Matches Theory with Practicality Understanding the rules of volleyball is very important. Understanding how the game is played today makes the difference in how you officiate, in how you conduct a match. Practical application of the rules can help “facilitate” a match.

5 5 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball 1. COMMUNICATION 2.CONSISTENCY (also refer to the handout, “Establishing Standards for Calling Hands”) 3.CONTROL

6 6 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball COMMUNICATION Approach to Communication: Success of any relationship depends upon effective communication. It is usually better to be proactive rather than reactive. Communication includes creating a climate of comfort through: Awareness of self and others. How are we doing? How am I being received and perceived? Respect for self and others. Openness reflected in active listening and give-and- take exchanges.

7 7 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Whom do you communicate with? Your Fellow Official Support Staff Players Coaches Host Management Fans Assigner Self

8 8 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Your Partner Your Fellow Official Communication is essential for effective teamwork and partnering and for “facilitating” a match. Officials are judged in terms of how well they did as a team. You can’t do well unless your partner does well. You have to establish that you’re a team. Entering the venue together helps. You meet the coaches together as a team, you work as a team and you leave as a team. You support your partner throughout the match. Whether it’s your regular partner or not, it’s your partner.

9 9 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Your Partner Your Fellow Official For effective communication/teamwork, you need: To share the workload (net check, area inspection, ball pressure check, and instruction of support staff). A pre-match discussion during which: Umpire gets an answer to “what do you expect of me?” Informal signals are agreed upon. Eye contact agreed upon (before, during and after each play). Post-match discussion with candid assessment of how you partnered, what worked well, what could have been better. Agreed-upon exit plan to “toot and scoot” after last match.

10 10 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Support Staff Support Staff Creating rapport is essential! We have unpaid, uncertified volunteers making critical decisions. Line Judges Scorer Assistant Scorer/Libero Tracker Timer/Scoreboard Operator Announcer Ball “Shaggers” (when you have them!)

11 11 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Support Staff Support Staff: Line judges The referee typically instructs the line judges, evaluates ability/experience, places them in their respective positions, and evaluates their performance. The “SALT” acronym (Service, Antenna, Line, Touch) is typically used to teach/review signals (with or without flags). Overruling may be necessary, so address this. Using line judge calls helps involve the LJs and benefits the match. Ask for constant eye contact with the referee. Use time-outs for further instruction of LJs, as needed.

12 12 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Support Staff Support Staff: Scorer/Scorekeeper Umpire typically works with the official scorer, evaluates experience, checks line-up entry, checks the “book” during time-outs and gets the scorer ready to provide the numbers of the next 3 servers (front row), as needed. Umpire reminds the scorer to identify a wrong server prior to the serve but report it to umpire after service contact. Ensuring the proper score is kept means the umpire gives the scorer enough time to record substitutions, including time to verify that the scoreboard matches the book.

13 13 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Support Staff Support Staff: Assistant Scorer/Libero Tracker The umpire works with the assistant scorer (LT) who tracks the libero and ensures the LT is partnering with the scorer. The LT is instructed to ensure proper libero replacements occur, that the same 2 numbers are on either side of the “L,” that all substitutions are recorded as well as libero replacements, that libero exchange rules are followed and that libero serving is properly recorded. Illegal libero replacements should reported immediately when identified by the libero tracker.

14 14 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Support Staff Support Staff: Timer/Scoreboard Operator The umpire works with the timer to ensure the horn or buzzer sounds under certain circumstances and that the score is posted accurately. This occurs through partnering with the scorer. The umpire observes the timing of match segments throughout the match and addresses any problems. The umpire should communicate expectations for warm- ups, time-outs and between-game intervals.

15 15 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Support Staff Support Staff: Announcer The umpire works with the announcer to ensure a common understanding of: How player introductions and the National Anthem will occur (timing). How flash photography and fan behavior issues will be addressed. Whether the announcer will indicate who is serving and make a neutral commentary, if any commentary is made at all.

16 16 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Support Staff Support Staff: Ball Shaggers The referee typically instructs the ball “shaggers,” in the rare cases we have them, regarding: Wiping the ball to keep it dry. Where the ball should be held and where the extra ball should go. Properly rolling the ball. Avoiding interfering with play and safety issues.

17 17 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Players Players Perception is reality. Don’t call players by their names which conveys favoritism. To talk with the captain, say “captain.” They’re really the only ones to address officials. If you do need to talk directly with a player, use the player’s number to address her (“#17,…) or go through captain. Work through captain to prevent problems (screening, close to illegal alignment, close to delay of serve, close to issuing a card, to carry a communication to the coach). Post match, limit any commentary to “nice match.” Never touch a player or coach other than via a handshake and only if the handshake is initiated by the player or coach.

18 18 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Players/Coaches Players and Coaches Perception is reality. Ensure both officials meet with both coaches, spend an equal amount of time and be cordial but brief. Don’t call coaches by their names. To talk with the coach, say “coach.” During the match, clarifications are given the coach through the umpire. The referee may work through the captain to prevent problems while the umpire may work through the captain or head coach (fix potential screening, a close-to-illegal alignment, a close to delay of serve, behavior that could be leading to a card, and to answer legitimate questions). The umpire addresses bench behavior through the coach.

19 19 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Players/Coaches Players and Coaches Be aware of problems such as jewelry and illegal equipment during warm-ups and be proactive in getting a player who is warming up off the court as needed for the removal of illegal items. To talk with a player, use the player’s number. “#15, please remove the rubber band from your wrist.” “#25, you have tape over an ear. You can’t warm-up or play with jewelry. Please take care of this now so you can go back to warming up.” “#10, are you okay?” During the match, the umpire should address a player getting off the bench other than in one of the approved situations (cheer, sub, get water, greet a teammate).

20 20 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Coaches Coaches Approach with your partner for introductions, be cordial but brief, address new rules or rule questions. Address the coach by saying “coach” and not by using the coach’s name. Protect the referee through working with coach. Remember the sitting coach rule (the coach is not permitted to be up to argue on a dead ball, just coach). Go through the coach to address a problem with a player on the court. Don’t initiate a post-match hand shake.

21 21 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Coaches/Captains Pre-Match with Head Coaches and Captains The referee introduces him/herself and partner, and asks captains and coaches to introduce themselves. The referee goes over the court and playing area, legal equipment and uniforms, match and warm-up format and umpire adds information including waiting for authorization for subs to enter, then asks if there are any questions. Conclude with calling of the coin toss, ensuring the visiting captain repeats the call and is shown the result of toss, then identify immediately which team has the serve to score-table staff.

22 22 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Coaches Responding to Coach During Match The umpire’s role is to serve and protect the referee. When a coach has a problem or question, the umpire does not allow coach to yell across court at the referee. The umpire is proactive in anticipating a coach who will have a concern about a close call or non-call. The umpire does not permit coach to stand to address a call since this is not one of the times a coach is permitted to be off the bench. Therefore, the umpire should go to the coach to address a concern, quickly respond, indicate “let’s play,” and give the court back.

23 23 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Coaches Responding to Coach During Match The umpire does not allow coach to continue to address judgment calls. After “let’s play,” the head coach is risking a card. Don’t turn your back on the other coach! Umpire informs the head coach, if possible, regarding approaching issuance of a sanction card since this will result in loss of ability to stand and coach on a dead ball for the rest of the match. If a player jumps up in response to a call or non-call, the umpire should immediately have the player sit down and issue a warning (may be verbal). Subsequent similar behavior should result in a card which will result in loss of standing privileges for the head coach.

24 24 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Host Management Host management Affirm that you will be officiating 3 days prior to the match with phone call to Athletic Department. Be sure to say “hi” and “thank you for the opportunity” when arriving; identify room to change clothes and store officiating gear. Identify where host management will be located, if needed, before, during and after the match. Involve host management when there are facility problems, safety concerns, unruly fans, or other such issues.

25 25 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Fans Fans Generally, do not respond to fans during a match (perception that the official has “rabbit ears”). If there is an unruly fan, this is where you would get host management involved such as if what is being said is truly offensive, threatening or aimed at intimidation. If the opportunity presents itself, you might seek to explain a rule to a fan. But, avoid confrontation at all cost since this is a no-win situation. Stop flash photography during play (safety issue). Avoid using a public restroom and avoid crowds to prevent unnecessary problems..

26 26 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Your Assigner Your assigner Work with your assigner through prompt acceptance or rejection of assignments. Never push for particular matches but make your availability known. Honor your commitments, and fulfill your contractual obligations. Never seek casual release from a contract. Don’t intentionally double book. Obtain an acceptable replacement if you have to seek turning back an assignment for a valid reason. If there were any problems at a match, notify your assigner immediately. Don’t forget to say, “thanks.” Seek a mentor, who could be your assigner, to “move up.” Ask for feedback.

27 27 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Communication with Yourself Self Use “self encouragement” through positive thoughts. If you’re thinking about the call that you might have missed, you’re probably going to miss the next one. Don’t dwell on your mistakes; learn from them. Try to create comfort, relax and relieve stress through such techniques as deep breathing and imaging. Set goals and evaluate yourself fairly. Be aware of how you relate to others and how you are “received” and “perceived.” Try to maintain wide to narrow focus while you’re on the stand or working on the floor as umpire.

28 28 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONSISTENCY 4 areas: Ball handling. Rules. Warnings. Sanctions.

29 29 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONSISTENCY What coaches want and expect: Ball Handling. (Read “Establishing Standards for Calling Hands” handout) Establish a comfort zone for ball-handling. Know what is acceptable to allow, and let play continue. The first few calls set the tone for the match. Know what not to call, and don’t call it! One philosophy is don’t call it unless it’s “gross” which is clearly a matter of judgment. Don’t go by looks, sound, spin or body position, only the contact with the ball that you see. Don’t look ahead of the play.

30 30 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONSISTENCY Ball Handling: “Ugly” is not necessarily a violation. Importance in judging the duration and the direction. Too much control is going to be an illegal hit for prolonged contact. Lack of control likely is going to be a double hit or multiple contacts. First contact is never a “double hit” (multiple contacts) when only one effort is being made. Can be a held ball (prolonged contact) and should be called if it is. The second contact likely will be a double hit, if there’s a fault, and the third hit will likely be prolonged contact but can be multiple contacts.

31 31 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONSISTENCY Ball Handling: Expect to hear such things as, “They didn’t call it that way last night,” “Call it both ways” and “Be consistent.” The only thing that is going to be consistent about us as individual officials is that we’re different. Nevertheless, players, coaches and fans are entitled to having us be consistent during the match. If you make a call in the first game, you better be prepared to make that same call in a deciding game. If you called it early in the match, you have to call it late. That’s the type of consistency we should be striving for.

32 32 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONSISTENCY Ball Handling: Always remember the importance of the first few “handles” since your calls and non-calls will set what the players and coaches expect for the match. Call only the faults you actually see, and do not call a fault in response to a coach yelling at you! Let the players decide the match, but don’t ignore ball- handling errors on game or match point. If it’s an error you call it; if it is not, you let it go – this is done within the consistency that you’ve maintained for that entire match.

33 33 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONSISTENCY What coaches want and expect: Rules. We referee different levels of volleyball. Some do USA Volleyball or collegiate matches as well as high school. Some work middle school. However, if you know one set of rules and make the comparison from this standpoint, it will help you the most if you officiate under multiple rule sets. PAVO and USA Volleyball have rule comparison sheets on their websites that include NFHS rules since NFHS gives input to each year’s comparison sheet.

34 34 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONSISTENCY Rules: To understand today’s game of volleyball, you have to be a student of the game. Attend matches and observe from the stands. Observe the play, receiving formations, whether you can see screening, where the setters are coming from on the court, offensive strategies, and during-the-match moves that address game flow and adjustments. Observe your fellow officials, but without commenting. Observe whether their signals are clear to everyone and how well they seem to partner. Watch informal signals. Watch how the officials work with the coaches.

35 35 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONSISTENCY Rules: When officiating, use the acceptable standards as well as the rules of what you’re officiating. There is no such thing as an insignificant net for OHSAA/NFHS. All nets that occur while the ball is in play should be called. Apply the rules properly to the fact pattern that you observe. Use your judgment correctly pertaining to what level you’re officiating. For us, it’s high school girls’ VB. Coaches should know the rules but the “protest” process for OHSAA requires a coach to ask for a time-out to get the referee to review a decision that was made on the immediately preceding rally.

36 36 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONSISTENCY Rules: A review of a decision should be accepted if: It is timely. It does not solely involve judgment (such as ball in or out, touch, etc.). Keep the NFHS Volleyball Rules Book and the Case Book and Manual close at hand to refer to it if you need it. Study the rules throughout the season and discuss rule situations that arise with your Rules Interpreter or Advisor.

37 37 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONSISTENCY What coaches want and expect: Warnings. Need to be handled with consistency. If you warn one team informally for something (no card issued), be prepared to do the same for the other team. If you issue a yellow warning card, be prepared to handle it the same way if merited in terms of the other team. And, you have to quickly remind the affected head coach that the card issued to the coach or to bench personnel removes the head coach’s ability to stand and coach on a dead ball for the rest of the match.

38 38 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONSISTENCY Warnings: Need to be handled with consistency. The gray area: we can take a hard line, by-the-book approach, or we can take a more liberal approach IF it doesn’t affect the outcome of the match. The consistency factor always has to be maintained. If you choose to issue a verbal warning because a yellow warning card puts the head coach on the bench for the rest of the match, not a problem. But you can’t continue to issue verbal warnings and eventually have to be prepared to issue a card. And, it has to be handled the same way for the other team.

39 39 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONSISTENCY Warnings: Example 1: Screening is very rarely called but happens more frequently than many think. If you think there’s a “potential” for a screen, you can warn the players involved but have to penalize it if the players have actually committed a screen by how the ball passed over the players since a violation occurred. Example 2: Near to an overlap (close to illegal alignment) can be warned. Advantage is sometimes used rather than “counting boards” – today’s philosophy supports fixing it if you can but calling it early, not ignore early and call it late. Give numbers of players: “#5 and #6, there’s a potential overlap, coach.” Or, “Coach, potential overlap, #5 and #6, RF/RB.”

40 40 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONSISTENCY What coaches want and expect: Sanctions. If you give one team a card for unsporting conduct, be prepared to do the same for any other player on that team and for the other team. Be consistent throughout the match. Convey the sanctions through the coach. Warnings can go to the coach, to the captain or to a player at an appropriate time. You can warn in the gray area of potentially a violation but violations must be penalized. Our desire, regardless, is to allow the teams to decide the match. With consistency, we can strive toward achieving this.

41 41 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball: CONSISTENCY Sanctions: Key to issuing cards is first to determine whether there is an initial emotional response to a situation or a conscious reaction. If a player or coaches first reaction is sufficiently minor to be penalized with a formal warning/yellow card, try to choose this route rather than issuing a penalty/red card. Be aware of the coaching strategy used by some to try to get a card to motivate the teams or even to try to get an advantage and influence match officials. Consistency is the best protection here.

42 42 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONSISTENCY Sanctions: Regardless, unsporting acts have to be addressed either by a yellow card/warning for an emotional reaction that is limited or a red card/penalty for a more conscious action. Rude conduct would merit a red card. Offensive conduct or repeated rude conduct on the part of anyone would be subject to possible disqualification (red and yellow cards, held apart) as would an aggressive act. Talking through the net typically merits at least a yellow card while taunting (celebrating at the other team) typically merits a red card. If you can’t identify the player, the card goes to the head coach. Gestures as well as words can merit a sanction.

43 43 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONSISTENCY Sanctions: Offensive conduct or repeated rude conduct on the part of anyone would be subject to possible disqualification (red and yellow cards, held apart) as would an aggressive act. Gestures as well as words can merit a penalty/red card or beyond. Talking through the net typically merits at least a yellow card while taunting (celebrating at the other team) typically merits a red card. If you can’t identify the player, the card goes to the captain for failure to control her team. If bench personnel including assistant coaches are involved, the card goes to the head coach. Issuance of cards is a judgment call, not subject to review.

44 44 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONSISTENCY Sanctions: UROA is the acronym to remember which cards to issue. Unsporting conduct is a warning (yellow card). Rude conduct that goes beyond unsporting and or is repeated unsporting conduct by the same person is a penalty (red card). Offensive conduct or repeated rude conduct on the part of the same person would be subjected to disqualification (red and yellow cards, held apart in separate hands) as would an aggressive action. An incident report is required. Disqualified player must leave the area if adult supervision available. Coach must leave the building.

45 45 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONSISTENCY Sanctions: Question to ask about whether your decision-making as an official is being affected by someone’s actions during the match. If so, a sanction must be issued to whoever is causing this to occur. Should be treated dispassionately, just as an official should any other decision that is being made. Keep your cool. Don’t show anger. Remain as detached as you can. You must be fair to the other team. Other team is making all the complaints and getting all the attention.

46 46 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL What are the key elements of “Control”? Everything starts with self control. Informal warnings. Prevention. Bench control. Eye contact and use of “let’s play” followed by ready signal.

47 47 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Control: Equipment. Appearance. Preparation. Confidence. Delays.

48 48 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Control with Equipment: Make sure you measure the net. Requires “accurate” net chain. Measure and verify marking at correct height based on level you’re working. Doesn’t assume your net chain is marked at the correct settings. Don’t try to fix a net on your own. Get help from host management or the coach if you can’t adjust the net with the net ropes and cables. Line up the antennas on the outside of the sidelines using the net chain as a plumb bob/line.

49 49 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Equipment: Make sure you check pressure in all balls that will be used for the match. Don’t just feel for correct pressure without also measuring using a ball pressure gauge that you have tested the accuracy on previously (such as compared to someone else’s gauge). If possible, make sure you distinguish game balls from other balls to avoid getting them mixed up. All balls for the match should be set at the same ball pressure.

50 50 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Equipment: Make sure the standards and referee stand are padded. Padding is not an option. Can’t play the match without this. Make sure all court lines are down and at correct distances. Blue/white painters’ tape good to fix a line. Check to ensure the referee stand is properly secured and at the right height for the official. Score table set far enough back and chairs back. Keep things out of the substitution zone between benches and score table. Safety is paramount. Get unsafe objects removed from warm-up area.

51 51 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Control with Appearance: Body language says a lot along with the official’s facial expressions. Must give perception of laid back but not uninterested. Good posture on the stand and on the floor is very important. Don’t be too casual. Don’t ever lean on the post or stand. Hands on the hips can look a bit confrontational. Don’t be too rigid. Look and feel relaxed.

52 52 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Appearance: Be careful and be aware of how you conduct yourself with the people around you. Be friendly but do not attempt to be everybody’s friend. Grooming is important. Not only neat appearance but pressed shirts and pants, shoes in good condition and not scuffed (white or black shoes). Shorts are not recommended. They look too casual. Shirt tucked in. Look physically fit and up to the task of officiating.

53 53 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Appearance: Wear the correct uniform! If you officiate rule sets that wear navy blue dress pants, make sure you’re wearing black dress pants. And make sure your clothes fit! White shirt should not have stains. Bring an extra shirt and pants in case of an accident. Extra belt, extra pair of socks (perhaps for partner!). White shoes should look white (white polish for scuffs). Black shoes (black socks), black polish.

54 54 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Control with Preparation: Know the rules. Be up on the current techniques and trends. Observe matches. Discuss situations with each other, brainstorm. Ask questions. Keep notes. Make the uncomfortable, comfortable by confronting your weaknesses. Learn to deal with high-tension matches and learn from your mistakes. Take challenging matches to grow your comfort.

55 55 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Preparation: Anticipate situations through visualization, realization regarding which rules apply and how to apply them appropriately. If you know the game, study the game, you realize that things seem to happen on a regular basis. Always remain positive. Realize that your preparation is vitally important to the success of the match. Exude confidence, but not cockiness because you realize the match isn’t about you. It’s about the players and teams.

56 56 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Control with Confidence: Confidence is shown through use of your whistle; shows you are in control. Different whistle sounds are called for based on the reason for the whistle. Discriminating and distinct whistles including, but not limited to: Beckon for serve. Whistle to end a rally. Whistle for a substitution. Whistle for a time-out. Whistle to call attention to a potential safety hazard. Whistle to hold up play. Whistle to overrule a line judge.

57 57 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Confidence: Confidence is shown through use of signals : Clear and distinct. Marked by signal separation. Set the tempo. Strong but unrushed to avoid creating confusion (what was the call?), especially when the fault is shown first before who won the rally and serves next. Don’t be sloppy and use the CORRECT signals.

58 58 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Confidence: Pre-match inspection of the site, equipment, ensuring no sharp metal protruding from bottom of an antenna. Pre-match meeting with partner. Pre-match meeting with captains/coaches. Brief the line judges, scorer, assistant scorer, timer/ scoreboard operator and communication with announcer. On-going communication that is verbal and non- verbal. Umpire assists the referee, monitors warm-ups.

59 59 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Confidence: Have rapport with the bench to create a climate of comfort and an open ear. Make sure court is ready for play and give it back to the referee. Control the substitutions. Position and transition of umpire important in doing the job properly and focusing on net and center line and focusing on play between the center line and the attack line while also taking care of coach’s requests. Following player movement as umpire while referee follows ball movement to provide proper court coverage.

60 60 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Control of Delays: Always err on the side of safety when dealing with a request to have the ball wiped, the floor toweled, time for a player to tie a shoelace, a contact off center or lost, a player injury (30 seconds to evaluate), right at a time when a coach doesn’t have a time-out left or the other team is on a run or it’s the end of a close game. Umpire inspects/checks/verifies these situations to avoid continuing gamesmanship. Would you expect the need for a floor wipe in November? Intentional delays must be sanctioned. “Hey, wait a minute” is a delaying tactic.

61 61 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Delays: “Defuse and defend” is part of the umpire’s role to “serve and protect” the referee. Listen carefully to a coach’s question without turning your back on the other coach or the court (your partner!). Be proactive. Give a short concise answer but don’t quote the rule to the coach. Rather, interpret the practical application of the rule and end with “let’s play, coach” and then turn the match back to the referee to facilitate game flow. The umpire should not permit judgment calls to be continually challenged without warning and finally asking for a card.

62 62 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Delays: When actions start to have an affect on an official’s judgment, the official must take necessary action to stop the influence and/or distractions. “Coach, I feel like your constant questioning of judgment calls is affecting my judgment. You’re close to a card.” Now, the ball is in the coach’s court and the coach is duly warned.

63 63 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Control of Play through Informal Signals: Informal signals are key communication tools for the officiating crew. They fall into the responsibility of the referee for scanning to take in all pertinent, available information before making a decision. Overall, the referee and umpire are in a constant scan mode, looking for potential safety issues, coach requests, bench activity, young children on the court surface, partner and line judges in position, need for additional time on the part of the score table, etc.

64 64 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Informal Signals: These signals follow the pre-match agreements on what the umpire will signal the referee: Show only play-ending information such as 4-hits (touch by the block on third hit that goes into the tape, don’t show a touch signal), 2-hits, prolonged contact, below-the-waist contact, assisted hit, illegal attack, illegal back-row block, over-the-net contact, ball down/in, ball out, ball touched out, possible illegal alignment on the serving team, possible screening formation, etc.

65 65 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Informal Signals: If a ball has already been contacted three times and the next contact will result in the fourth hit, show four fingers in the chest area using the hand to the side of the team that would be committing the fault upon next contact. If a third hit has been touched by the block and stays on the side of the attacking team, no hand signal will be made to show touch but a head nod can affirm “I saw a touch, play on.”

66 66 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Informal Signals: If there is a possible screening formation based on the umpire’s scan with signs that the receiving team is struggling to see the serve, the umpire may show the screen signal in the chest area to alert the referee to possible screening. If there is a double hit or multiple contacts outside the view of the referee OR if, from the umpire’s angle, there is a double hit on a ball that the umpire believes the referee has called previously, the umpire may show the 2-hit signal in the chest area to possibly help the referee make a fault call.

67 67 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Informal Signals: If there is an illegal hit outside the view of the referee in terms of prolonged contact, below-the-waist contact, or an assisted hit, the umpire may show the illegal hit signal in the chest area using the hand on the side of the team that committed the fault. If there is a back-row blocker near the net, reaching higher than the net and contacting the ball or a back- row player participating in a completed collective block, the umpire should step out and show the illegal block signal in the chest area. The umpire may whistle the fault if the referee does not see the signal and misses the back-row block.

68 68 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Informal Signals: If a back-row player with last contact in the attack zone has contacted a ball near the top of the net, the umpire should step out and show the possibility of an illegal back-row attack in the chest area on the side of the attacking team. If the ball clearly is above net height and the ball then crossed the net or is legally contacted by the opponent, the umpire may show a strong attack signal and may whistle the fault if the referee doesn’t see the signal and just “misses it.”

69 69 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Informal Signals: If a player reaches over the net and contacts the ball which has not been attacked while the ball is totally on the opponent’s side of the net, the umpire should step out and show the over- the-net signal in the chest area. This includes an attack on the other side of the net, a block contact which takes a play away from the opponent’s on a ball that was not going over the net and/or is not an attack. However, any ball that has already been contacted three times may be blocked on the opponent’s side.

70 70 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Informal Signals: The umpire may have a great angle plus with ability to adjust position to see a ball down/in and may step out to signal the referee to assist with making the call. If the referee waves off the umpire (indicating the referee saw the ball “up,” the umpire should pull the call back and play continues. However, if the referee fails to see the call despite the step out and “sell” job, the umpire – being 105% certain that the ball touched the court, is empowered to whistle the fault.

71 71 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Informal Signals: The umpire may also have an informal “out” call to offer on a play where the umpire’s focus did not have to stay with the net and center line, just in case the referee is left with a no-call on the part of a line judge. When a ball has landed out or near a line and the umpire has a touch on the ball, the umpire should step out big and show the touch call. The umpire may show a possible illegal alignment on the serving team picked up during the umpire’s court scan. Such a situation typically involves a player position switch. This is part of the pre-match discussion and may involve an informal signal.

72 72 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Informal Signals: After confirming the serving team has game point, the umpire will show this with an index finger on the shoulder of the team that has game point. So should the scorer. The referee will acknowledge the signal with a nod but will not signal back in return. The informal signal of game point is repeated only as necessary and not while the other team is continuing to serve and the receiving team has repeated game points. However, if the score becomes tied, game point will be shown each time either team has a game point through the end of the game.

73 73 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Informal Signals: When a team has a legal back-row attack because a back-row player left the floor from behind the attack line or a back-row player played a ball when the ball was not entirely above the height of the net, the umpire may show an informal signal of legal back-row attack off to the side on the side of the court where the play occurred. This may help the referee if the referee’s view was screened. To indicate a legal attack by a back-row player, make a vertical signal with the arm on the side of the attack. Some officials use the the patting down signal to show the ball was not totally above net height but this is not yet an “official” informal signal for NFHS.

74 74 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Informal Signals: The back-row “safe” signal should be used sparingly by the umpire, typically only when the player’s take off was close to the attack line or the ball was near the top of the net. The safe signal may also be used to show the libero was making a finger-tip setting action from outside the attack zone or that the next contact off the libero set from the attack zone was on a ball that was not totally above the height of the net.

75 75 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Informal Signals: Number of time-outs taken by each team is shown by the umpire at the beginning of the time-out at the end of the time-out. The scorer typically confirms number of time-outs used by each team to the umpire and signals the number to the referee during the time-out, then both umpire and scorer show this at the end of the time-out. The umpire informs the two coaches as well. A good call by either official may be responded to by the partner with a thumbs up signal as part of offering support.

76 76 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Informal Signals: There are times where an informal signal by the umpire will not be sufficient. Part of effective partnering is recognizing when your partner needs help and leading the call. A bang-bang play at the net, ball played tight to the net, attack-block-antenna and who the fault was on, etc. can all necessitate the umpire leading the referee. Recognizing that “deer-in-the-headlights” look and need for help can be a partnership-defining moment! Get the call right!

77 77 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Informal Signals: There are times when the umpire needs to come across the court after a play for a private discussion with the referee regarding something that simply can’t be signaled. Typically, the partners pre-arrange that when the umpire moves to the court with toes to the sideline, the referee should call the umpire across the court. The above scenario is to be used only for matters that merit special concern.

78 78 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball CONTROL Informal Signals: Warnings and sanctions are never informal signals for high school volleyball. The purpose of a warning is to call sufficient attention to the inappropriate behavior as to prevent an escalation and the need for a formal warning/yellow card. The issuance of a yellow card may be requested by the umpire or directly by the referee. Sanctions in the form of a penalty (red card) or disqualification (red and yellow cards held in separate hands) may be requested by the umpire. The referee may issue these cards directly as well.

79 79 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Final Thoughts Officials don’t make bad calls but, from time to time, we make incorrect ones. The goal is not to make a lot of them. If you are comfortable where you are, that’s where you will stay. Staying where you are (failure to grow your officiating) doesn’t offer the quality of service you could be providing as an official. As officials, we should strive to provide a fair game to the participants and to call a perfect match. This helps minimize errors in judgment and mitigates against inconsistency.

80 80 The 3 Cs of Officiating Volleyball Final Thoughts QUESTIONS


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