Jan. 2 Basketball Memo

AD’s and Coaches:

I hope you have had a great holiday season.  A blessed Happy New Year to you and your families; hopefully you had a little time to enjoy family and friends!  The 2018 year is starting out with some crazy cold weather but when the basketball games return following the break the games will certainly be exciting.  The IGHSAU staff has enjoyed getting out and watching some of the games and teams during the season.  We are always impressed with the tremendous job that our coaches and administrators are doing with our schools and athletic programs.  Keep up the great work!!  As we all know after the holiday break, teams begin to think about conference championships and preparation for the post-season tournaments. The following information should help as we all prepare for the post-season.  In addition, the latest officials’ memo has been included within this memo.  It is important that the coaches and athletic administrators are aware of some focus points that are being shared with the basketball officials.

    1. QuikStats – Basketball coaches have been doing an outstanding job with QuikStats. A reminder that updates are required each Tuesday at noon.
    2. Rankings- Weekly rankings will continue each Thursday of the season. The next set of rankings will be released this Thursday (Jan. 4).
    3. Regional Assignments – Classes 1A, 2A, 3A assignments will be posted the week of January 22. Classes 4A and 5A will be released the week of January 29.
    4. Site availability – If you have not yet completed the site availability schedule for the post-season basketball games, please complete that by January 10, 2018. We have posted the current list on the IGHSAU website for you to check what has been submitted. You can view the link on the website by clicking here.
    5. Post-season information – In the next couple of weeks, regional rosters and site host checklist information will be posted on the website as we get closer to the post-season. A reminder: regional tickets for hosting will not be sent from the IGHSAU.  Host sites will be allowed to use your regular season tickets for regional games.  If you would like the IGHSAU to mail regional tickets to your school, please contact Sherry at sherry@ighsau.org.

The following is the information that Chuck Brittain, Coordinator of Basketball Officials has communicated with the basketball officials:

As we know after the holidays and the Christmas break, teams begin to think about conference championships and seeding for tournament purposes.  As you know, that means we as officials need to sharpen our games both on and off the court with our noses in those rule, case and official’s manual books. We continue to hear that our communication seems to be improving and for the most part the games that our observers have been to have been well officiated. We know many of you have expressed how valuable you think that the observer program is and will be going forward and we hope to enhance this process even more in the future. As we prepare for the stretch run we thought it would be good to share some of the officiating observations that has been received and the information that seems to appear on many of these reports.

Head Coaches While Ball is in Play: We ask you NOT to talk with head coaches or attempt to explain a call when the ball is in play. We have a job to do and that is officiate the game that is being played. If you feel an explanation is necessary, wait for a dead ball situation and then explain- otherwise continue to officiate. In many cases, everyone will just move on. We recommend when dealing with head coaches that you exercise what Chuck calls the 3B’s: Be Brief, Be Bright, Be Gone. Keep the conversation short, know what you’re are talking about, and then get back to work.

Traveling:  To be effective in officiating traveling, you must know which foot is the pivot foot – so be sure that you are aware of which foot is the pivot foot. One thing that will help is when in your primary area you officiate “feet up on the catch.” Get your best angle to get a full view of the entire play.Officiating your area of responsibility when off ball will also help you prepare for officiating traveling. Study jump stops, starting and ending a dribble, interrupted dribbles, and when a player goes to the floor with the ball what is the appropriate call to be made. What happens when the ball is fumbled or muffed?

Reporting Fouls and Getting to the Reporting Area:  When you are the calling official and you have made sure that your partners know what you have called, who created the foul, and who the shooter will be, you are ready to report to the table. Get to the reporting area in a brisk manner or at least move with purpose to this reporting area, STOP, give the number(s) of the player who the foul was on, signal what type of foul it was, and if shooting free throws how many, then move to your area of next responsibility. When an official slowly walks to the reporting area, it gives an impression that the official is not sure of the call that was made. (The reporting area is illustrated on page 83 of your Basketball Officials Manual 2017-2019)

Stopping the Clock: Just a reminder to get that clock stopping hand high and clearly seen when you are the calling official. The clock operator and your partners will need the help as these gyms get louder.

Off-Ball Coverages: I hear quite often that three sets of eyes are on the ball! Be sure your crew has a quality pregame and you are all aware of your primary and secondary areas of coverage and what the crew expects from each other. “Make a commitment to be the best team on the court.”

(a good pregame is printed on pages 13, 14, 15 of your Officials’ Manual 1.7A-R)

Observations  – Most of the observations have been sent out to you or are available on your arbiter account. As of the publishing of this letter we have performed a little over 700 observations by about 24 different observers so If you have concerns with the observation that you have been sent and you would prefer to self-observe that game, we would encourage that to occur. If you would ask the home or visiting team of the game you were observed to please send you the Hudl version of that game, so you may watch and see for yourself what you think, that would be a very helpful self-evaluation. Self-evaluation is always valuable and usually the best if you are honest with yourself and your partners. Maybe it was just a bad night?

Thanks for always working to improve your game and doing the very best job that you can for the coaches and athletes who play the games. We have been so impressed with your efforts and your willingness to improve. Always remember without you and your hard work we could not offer this educational experience for these fabulous young student athletes!!!

Have a great rest of the 2018 Basketball season. We are sure we will be seeing many of you as we go forward!!

Chuck Brittain, Coordinator of Basketball Officials                               IGHSAU

Gary Ross, Associate Director and Basketball Administrator             IGHSAU

Brett Nanninga, Associate Director and Basketball Administrator     IHSAA