Facing an era of a referee shortage and general discontent towards officiating, the local basketball officiating boards are planning an information session before each of the two Delaware high school basketball championship games.
Beginning before Saturday’s boys title game between Smyrna and Saint Elizabeth, IAABO District Boards 11 and 129, the groups that cover all of Delaware plus Cecil County, Maryland will distribute information at the Bob Carpenter Center’s Media Workroom (Room 103) on the bottom floor near the steps.
There will be another session before Monday night’s girls title game between Conrad and Caravel.
Layne Drexel helps coordinate new officials for IAABO, and said while they’re certainly looking for new officials, that’s not the only purpose for the session.
“Maybe some people have some questions about officiating we can answer, and maybe some people have questions about rules that we can answer.”
Officiating in Delaware, especially with Board 11 upstate, has been hit hard by a reduction of referees due to injuries and attrition for factors ranging from job situations to discontent over the reaction of fans, coaches, and players towards refs.
Ultimately, Drexel hopes by listening to the fans, an accord can be reached where behavior towards officials can become more gentile.
A fan had to be removed from one of the DIAA Girls Semifinals Friday night due to referee abuse, and a fan sitting in Sanford’s secured seating section during a Sunday quarterfinal could easily be heard screaming “Refs, you’re F***ing terrible, in front of four small children.”
Drexel said if there is a positive response to the sessions, they may attempt to make it an on-going series.
If you cannot make the information session, but are still interested in being an official, you can email