Referees Stink! ๐Ÿ˜ 

referees wells thompson
Wells and Referee Speaking

Referees stink! ๐Ÿ˜ 

Plain and simple. 

That was my idiotic attitude throughout my pro career.

But, I wish I could turn back time and slap some sense into my younger self.

I also wish I had the wherewithal to understand that respecting and loving referees is in EVERYONES best interest.

As a new season kicks off, it's easy to focus on the thrill of competition and the joy of competition. But amidst the cheers and adrenaline, the referees are an often overlooked and underappreciated group facing way too much negativity and criticism.

How many times have you seen a referee suddenly become more lenient after being bombarded with insults?

Yeah, never.

Respect, on the other hand? That can work wonders.

QUICK QUESTION --> Have you ever refereed a game?

I have ONCE. It gave me so much respect for them and what they do. And it was harder than I thought… much harder.

It's not hard to understand why there’s a national shortage of referees. (You read that right. A national shortage!) What teenager, 20-year-old, or adult wants to get screamed at by a bunch of overzealous and obnoxious parents? 

We can do better.

Parents, coaches, leaders, it starts with us.

We must model this first. Because more is caught than taught.

But modeling isn’t enough.

  • You must be proactive to teach this.
  • You must not tolerate abuse from anyone in your organizations.
  • You must hold yourself and your people accountable.

Sure, actions speak louder than words, but words matter too. So show some appreciation as well.

  • Coaches: Foster a respectful environment on and off the field. Praise good sportsmanship and confront unsportsmanlike behavior, including from parents. Remember, actions speak louder than words.
  • Parents: Be your child's biggest cheerleader, but don't be a sideline bully. Focus on effort and learning, not criticizing calls. Speak to your kids about how crucial role referees play in our ability to play and enjoy the beautiful game! 
  • Players: This season, let's shift our focus. Instead of venting frustrations, let's celebrate the referees and show them the love and respect they deserve.

To all the referees out there, THANK YOU!

Thank you for your time, your energy, your commitment! 

Without you, none of this would be possible.

 So, here's my challenge to you: after every game, take a moment to thank the referees. Let's show them that their efforts are noticed and valued.

Respect leads to a better game. Shouting, berating, and negativity only creates a  more stressful and negative environment for everyone. By showing appreciation and understanding, we create a more enjoyable experience for players, coaches, and referees alike.

It's the least we can do to ensure the future of the game we all love. ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘

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