Wow, Survived Friday, Jan 30;
One More Really Tough Friday, Feb 6;
Teams Trying to Line up For Playoffs;
Great Interest in Camp Already;
Honoring the Officials that will not be Returning Next Year;
If this is Your Last Year Refereeing, Let me Know;
If You Plan to go to Camp this Summer, Let Me Know;
Friday, Jan 30 –
The phone woke me up early Friday
morning with a call from a sick official.
Within ten minutes, another official had lost his aunt and within the
hour a third official canceled out due to injury. All were very good and legitimate excuses
and I was glad to help them out; but it sure did not make my life any
easier. Friday, there were 43 games and after accounting for normal blocks,
college blocks and work blocks; I did not have many officials sitting around.
All the cancellations came at the Varsity level and I had to squirm. Pulling a man from here, replacing a man
from there and asking another person to drive a very long distance, I was able to get
all the games covered before noon. I want to thank the people that said “Yes”
the moment I asked. That certainly makes my life a little easier. We now have
just two weeks left in regular season and one of those Fridays, Feb 6 is a
One More Really
Tough Friday, Feb 6 – I mentioned
above that Friday, Jan 31 ; there were 43 games and
I was basically out of officials. This
coming Friday, Feb 6, there are 46 games.
So you know I am already out of officials. Please do not cancel Friday, Feb 6. We
can’t afford it. If you have blocked that date, please think about opening it
back up; I
will probably need you before it is over.
Teams Trying to Line
up for Playoffs –
If you think the Coaches and Fans
have been bad already, wait til this week and next.
It’s the school’s last chance for some to even make the playoffs; but for
others, it will mean either a long road trip or the cozy confines of a home
contest. All these games are important and require your best effort. Let’s
try to work with the coaches and do our best to keep them in the game. It
will take a little more patience and understanding; but you have to know that they are
under a lot of pressure. Let’s work with them as best we can.
Listen Closely – In every Conference in both boys and
girls, no team has clinched their conference championship. In no conference has the top four teams
already been decided in order to know who will make the playoffs yet in both
boys and girls. In no conference in boys or girls has the top two teams been
determined that would have home floor advantage in a playoff. Every game is
important in these races and means something to someone. It may not even be
the teams playing, but someone else may need a team to win or lose for their
positioning. It is CRUNCH TIME. All
these games are important. Our officials need to be the best and give the best
effort. That includes getting to the
game on time. This is the time of the year you should live for as a referee. Enjoy it but know they are not going to
like everything you do. Have patience, understanding and be a people person
that someone can talk to.
Great Interest in Camp Already – I have not started sending the camp bulletins out yet; been too busy
with the games and the shortage of officials.
Things will slow down a bit in a couple of weeks and we will hit that
hard. Just wanted you to know that
there is a lot of interest in Camp this summer. We already have 17 that have told me they
were going. That is well ahead of the pace for any camp in the past. It is nice to see that you are taking this
opportunity to get in front of the new guy and show him what he has for next
season. And competitive; did I tell you it was competitive. Hope so because it will be competitive.
There are already two officials signed up that finished first; another one
that finished second and two more that finished third at previous camps. Throw in a couple more officials that
called an all Varsity schedule this year and #1 is totally up for grabs. But
the most important thing is for the new Regional Supervisor to see what he
has and who he can use at the Varsity Level. All the officials will improve
and make a steady advancement towards that goal as well. I anticipate that
there will be no part time officials.
It is looking very much like this camp will fill up with full time
people. If I can get all full time
will not sit anyone down that is staying the full three days so the new man
can look at someone who can only come one day. I think he as well as I would
be looking someone who is willing to commit full time to work on their game
and show what they can do.
Officials that Will not be Returning Next Year – With two weeks left in regular season games I want to remember and
honor a few more officials that have indicated this is or may be their last
year refereeing. I asked that if you
were going to retire at the end of this season, please let me know that it
would be your last. I have had many friends over the years and I have worked
with some good people. And each year at the Association meeting, we always
made a big deal and listed who the officials were that did not return. This
is what I want to do in this space the rest of the season. I just want to say
a few words about some of the officials who are hanging it up. You will miss
these individuals next season.
Vinston – The Little Man from Morehead
City has been with me
off and on for a very long time. He
joined up in 1988 and worked about ten years before he got a job that
required extensive travel and he had to pull away for 4 years. He managed to come back and worked a couple
of years before his health let him down.
He worked through some issues and joined back up with us again in 2007
where he worked right up to the beginning of this season. He has a super great
personality that everyone loves to be around and he is just one of those guys
that everyone knows. I can send him anywhere in the association and someone
in the gym will holler “Durwood’ or “Woodman”
before the game is over. He has been around and worked Baseball many moons
and has gone everywhere calling that sport. I am proud to say that I might be
one of a few that have called both sports with Vinston
and enjoyed every moment. But
regardless if he ever calls another game or not; I have a friend for life. “Wood” is
one of those people that all he has to do is walk in a room and people are
going to SMILE. He has a super personality and just does not seem to have any
enemies. Everyone likes him and he is fun to be around. Just reinforces what
I have said many times; I am blessed that this avocation of sports refereeing
has took me many places but more importantly,
It has afforded me the opportunity to make some super friends and Durwood is one of them.
Thanks Durwood for all your support through
Fields – I had an official in Kinston for years named
Jeff Fields. Jeff has a brother named Mickie
and I was aware of who Mickie was long before he
came to work for us. Mickie would talk to Jeff and
he could see what we had over in the Eastern Association that was missing in
the Association he was in. It was a friendship among the officials where we
pulled for each other to succeed. I think Mickie
wanted to be a part of that and he joined our association in 2010 so Mickie
has only been with us for five years. But he sure has made an impact during
those short years. His test scores
show that he is a man who believes in the rule book making 96 or better in
all but one test, and that one a 94. Excellent test taker, but he is like Durwood Vinston above; when he
walks into the room, people smile and edge over his way. He is fun to be around, always uplifting,
never talking behind anyone’s back and everything is always positive. Mickie Fields has been a real asset to our organization;
he has been to our camp and he fits in with any crew I put him with. The coaches love him and he never gets
marked off. Why, he will stop and
answer the coach’s questions. He hustles, uses good mechanics and adapts to
the Eastern officials way of refereeing.
He has been a pleasure to work with.
I wish we had more Mickie Fields type
Finally, If this is
Your Last Year Refereeing, Let me Know – I asked several of you before the season started if you were thinking
about retiring, go one more year and retire with me. As the season winds down,
I would like to say a few words about the officials calling it a Career on
the web page here. Please, if this is your last year calling; let me know so
I can include you in another “Honoring Officials” episode. Please let me know
now if this is “it” for you. Thanks. Just send me an email.
If You are Planning
to go to our Summer Camp, Please Let me Know – If you have ever been to camp, you know I send out these camp bulletins
telling you what to bring, where to be, what the plans are, the first day
schedule, and just general things any camper should know. I talk about tips for making a better
finish and generally just stay in contact with you during the off season. I
will start those bulletins in a couple of weeks and want to start making a
roster of officials that are interested in this last camp. If you would like
to get on the Camp bulletin list, send me an email. As we have stated, this is probably THE
MOST IMPORTANT CAMP we have every conducted. This may be the first time the
new Regional Supervisor gets the opportunity to see you and evaluate how you
will fit in his scheme of things for next season.
We are already short on officials this year and could have used some
more. But as you have seen from the column above, there are many officials
that are not returning. There are
going to be more spots up for grabs next year than any year in my 31 year
history. I have always been quick to say the best way to move up is: # 1 get better than the people in front of you OR # 2 be the
next best person waiting at the door when a slot comes open. I do not know
who will get the job, but I can guarantee that he is not going to know the
ability of over ten officials. This camp is your opportunity to show him what
you can do and show him that you are INTERESTED in being a vital part of his
organization. If you have never been to a camp, you should NOT MISS this opportunity to
move. Think of this, if he does not know you, you will start at the bottom
and it will take you years to move up.
If he sees you work and has an idea of where
to put you right off the bat, you could get somewhere and have a successful
career for the next ten years. Should you go to this camp? Only you can decide that answer. But I can advise you. You should be to this
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Office Hours for Officials – My office hours for officials are from 11:00am to 11:00pm
Up Coming Events / Dates::
Conference Play – Games get tougher, Coaches complain more as they
try to make the polayoffs.
ArbiterSports Site – For your convenience, here is
a link to the Arbiter Sports assigning site.
Once at the page,
there is a Log In box in the extreme top right hand
corner. I will leave this link here
during the season.
ARBITER Tid Bit – Click on any official’s name on the ARBITER
and a drop down screen will show his address.
Click on that address and MapQuest will provide a map to his house. Do
the same thing for a school for a map to that school or rec
My Email Address
- firstname.lastname@example.org (That is a # 1 behind the eoa,
not an “L”)
Home Phone – 252 522 2373
Cell Phone -
- 252 559 0493
Mailing Address : 3000
Graham Dr, Kinston,
N C 28504
EDITION # 956
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endorsed by any organization such as the NCHSAA or the National Federation of
High Schools. Except for the Opinion
Poll Results, all items are the opinion, philosophy or belief of Tommy
Mattocks. It's sole purpose is to provide
information and entertainment for the EOA members, former EOA members and any
other interested readers. We apologize for any inaccuracies or misspellings
that may slip through the cracks. Read at your own risk.