Officiating in women's basketball
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    Officiating in women's basketball

    I sent off an email to Mechelle Voepel tonight raising a question about something that has bothered me for a few years now...the decline of quality officiating in women's basketball. So I pose this to all of you...what are you seeing or have you seen over the years?

    I have often used the term thug ball to describe how ATM plays and of course don't worry about it much now that we don't play them. But it was the beginning, in my mind, of the decline of the women's finesse game. Teams that have great players are being countered by teams of muggers and hackers. Two recent examples of how coaches are taking advantage of what the officials are allowing to happen.

    Example 1 - Iowa State versus West Virginia. Second half. WVU benches their starters and puts in five subs. Their task? Hack, shove and bash our players into submission. Once that is accomplished put the starters back in and pull out a narrow win. Was WVU a better team than ISU? In the game of basketball I would say no. In street ball probably.

    Example 2 - Baylor versus UConn. UConn's strategy was to double and triple team Griner and shove, hack, and beat her into making mistakes or being neutralized. It didn't work in their case, but the game had several pretty violent moments. Many of those moments (just like in the ISU game) we saw bodies flying off of each other, hitting the court, and no fouls being called. It was not a pretty basketball game. Baylor simply made UConn pay for their strategy.

    So why is this happening? Is there a conspiracy to toughen up the game and supposedly make it more entertaining by allowing rough play? Are the officials just that bad? Are the players so good now that the officials can't keep up with the game? What say ye?

    In the end this style of play is IMO destroying the women's game. Just my two cents worth.



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    Re: Officiating in women's basketball

    let us know what you find out. good topic.



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    Re: Officiating in women's basketball

    To see "Big 12" officials routinely get picked for NCAA Final Four/Championship games is mind-blowing. You're telling me those are allegedly the BEST the game has to offer?



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    Re: Officiating in women's basketball

    Quote Originally Posted by acoustimac View Post
    I sent off an email to Mechelle Voepel tonight raising a question about something that has bothered me for a few years now...the decline of quality officiating in women's basketball. So I pose this to all of you...what are you seeing or have you seen over the years?

    I have often used the term thug ball to describe how ATM plays and of course don't worry about it much now that we don't play them. But it was the beginning, in my mind, of the decline of the women's finesse game. Teams that have great players are being countered by teams of muggers and hackers. Two recent examples of how coaches are taking advantage of what the officials are allowing to happen.

    Example 1 - Iowa State versus West Virginia. Second half. WVU benches their starters and puts in five subs. Their task? Hack, shove and bash our players into submission. Once that is accomplished put the starters back in and pull out a narrow win. Was WVU a better team than ISU? In the game of basketball I would say no. In street ball probably.

    Example 2 - Baylor versus UConn. UConn's strategy was to double and triple team Griner and shove, hack, and beat her into making mistakes or being neutralized. It didn't work in their case, but the game had several pretty violent moments. Many of those moments (just like in the ISU game) we saw bodies flying off of each other, hitting the court, and no fouls being called. It was not a pretty basketball game. Baylor simply made UConn pay for their strategy.

    So why is this happening? Is there a conspiracy to toughen up the game and supposedly make it more entertaining by allowing rough play? Are the officials just that bad? Are the players so good now that the officials can't keep up with the game? What say ye?

    In the end this style of play is IMO destroying the women's game. Just my two cents worth.
    Absolutely spot on. I think Coach Fennelly has changed his recruiting somewhat because our players are constantly being pushed around so much that we simply have to find hard nosed players like Pop for example. Many times I swear they're hardly able to run a play due to the pushing and shoving. It certainly isn't much fun to watch and I'm sure it's hard on the team too at times. By the way Pop is a heck of a player. We're a much better team than WV.



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    Re: Officiating in women's basketball

    We've seen the trend towards allowing the more rough style in the mens game too (see wvu, kstate). Its too bad the refs dont have the guts to call them all (which is why more teams employ this strategy), itd make for some rough to watch games at first but over time would make the game better.



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    Re: Officiating in women's basketball

    The Refs were told to make freedom of movement a point of emphasis this season. However as the season goes on they seem to forget that this a point of emphasis, and seem to let the holds, shoves and other movement limiting contact go.



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    Re: Officiating in women's basketball

    The NFL learned this year how badly the game can be affected by replacement refs. One of the guys who qualified this year before the strike was settled was a West Tx High School official who ref'd in 6-man football districts. The NFL was far too advanced for these guys. This is essentialy what we have in womens BB. The replacement refs, the left-overs from mens BB and pros. Or as Mulky calls them, "The Scrubs". Like a small town cop who couldn't meet the requirements in St Louis so he goes to Hooterville and becomes a "big duck in a little pond".

    I have watched WBB religiously for nearly 20 yrs, particularly Big 12. I know half of these officials by name. I can almost predict to a tee how the flow of a game is going to go as soon as I see who is assigned to the game. In fact the people who sit around me here in Waco have become so accustomed to my critique of them that they usually ask me before the game how it's going to be. Then as the game moves on I often get a knowing look from them and they'll say "Boy you nailed it, that's just what they're doing". Officiating is very tough, and I've done it a few times for some church teams and believe me it can be difficult to get it right. The main thing is to be consistant so everyone can establish their boundaries. What is so disgusting about some of these Big 12 refs is the major infractions they let go and the minor ones they hammer on. I swear it's like they can see a doodlebug but not an elephant.


    Last edited by geewago; 02-19-2013 at 10:41 PM.

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    Re: Officiating in women's basketball

    It has seemed to me that the female officials let more go I believe to show that the women are tough. Some of the officials are just plan inept and like to be the show. They call a play/game by halves one way and another way the next half. Officials are also too friendly with some coaches.They allow some to be out of the so called coaches box (even out on the floor during play) and tell others to sit down. And they ref too many games jumping all over the country with very little rest. As to the Big 12 refs we don't have just refs who do the Big 12, they ref all over. Finally I agree it has ruined the game, it used to be basketball and now as stated it is thug ball.



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    Re: Officiating in women's basketball

    Good topic. I don't think it's a Big 12 issue, or even a women's basketball issue. Basketball at the college level has become more physical and deep women's teams like A&M and WVU use this to their advantage. As an official, you don't want to blow your whistle every time down the floor and call a foul, it makes for a miserable game for everyone. I'm not sure what the solution is--yes officials can crack down and hope the teams adjust, but in order for that to stick, it is a significant undertaking that needs to happen at all levels.


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    Re: Officiating in women's basketball

    My number one problem with officials is we have these so called "points of emphasis" at the beginning of the season that they are going to watch for and really crack down on, yet it never happens or only happens a few games.

    One of them this year was hand-checking. The statement was you get one touch to establish position, and anything going forward is a foul - doesn't happen. Why even have the points of emphasis if you're not going to call the fouls? The article below talks about men's basketball, but a lot of it relates to the women's game too.

    College basketball 'is brutal to watch right now' - KCTV5


    Last edited by Three4Cy; 02-19-2013 at 11:45 PM.

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    Re: Officiating in women's basketball

    Quote Originally Posted by brentblum View Post
    Good topic. I don't think it's a Big 12 issue, or even a women's basketball issue. Basketball at the college level has become more physical and deep women's teams like A&M and WVU use this to their advantage. As an official, you don't want to blow your whistle every time down the floor and call a foul, it makes for a miserable game for everyone. I'm not sure what the solution is--yes officials can crack down and hope the teams adjust, but in order for that to stick, it is a significant undertaking that needs to happen at all levels.
    I get that refs dont want to have to call something every time down the floor, but if the stats are still like what three4cy's link has, fouls called is at an all time low, so refs have room to be calling more.

    Anyone can see the game is more physical than ever, but you can't tell by listening for sound of the whistle. Incredibly, fouls have dipped to a per-team average of 17.6, nearly a half-foul less than last season and on pace to be the fewest in NCAA history, going back to 1948.



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    Re: Officiating in women's basketball

    Quote Originally Posted by alarson View Post
    I get that refs dont want to have to call something every time down the floor, but if the stats are still like what three4cy's link has, fouls called is at an all time low, so refs have room to be calling more.

    [/FONT][/COLOR]
    i definitely agree. Would love to see both men's and women's called like the NBA. Not much hand checking, can't shove cutters, etc. It may take a year or two for players to get used to it, but would ultimately be beneficial.


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    Re: Officiating in women's basketball

    Quote Originally Posted by brentblum View Post
    Good topic. I don't think it's a Big 12 issue, or even a women's basketball issue. Basketball at the college level has become more physical and deep women's teams like A&M and WVU use this to their advantage. As an official, you don't want to blow your whistle every time down the floor and call a foul, it makes for a miserable game for everyone. I'm not sure what the solution is--yes officials can crack down and hope the teams adjust, but in order for that to stick, it is a significant undertaking that needs to happen at all levels.
    Something that jumped out at me when Nerlens Noel tore his knee was how much extra padding he was wearing. Shins, knees, thighs all visible here:

    Attachment 18393


    Quote Originally Posted by im4cyclones View Post
    [Anything] is easy if you are content to suck at it.

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    Re: Officiating in women's basketball

    Quote Originally Posted by brentblum View Post
    Good topic. I don't think it's a Big 12 issue, or even a women's basketball issue. Basketball at the college level has become more physical and deep women's teams like A&M and WVU use this to their advantage. As an official, you don't want to blow your whistle every time down the floor and call a foul, it makes for a miserable game for everyone. I'm not sure what the solution is--yes officials can crack down and hope the teams adjust, but in order for that to stick, it is a significant undertaking that needs to happen at all levels.
    While I agree a game with a foul everytime does become miserable to watch (unless your team is getting all the calls). The problem is that there are rules, if they were enforced teams would have to go back to playing basketball and not rugby on the floor. Either change the rules and tell teams anything goes, so coaches can recuit the thugs they need, or call the game by the rules.



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    Re: Officiating in women's basketball

    Quote Originally Posted by brentblum View Post
    Good topic. I don't think it's a Big 12 issue, or even a women's basketball issue. Basketball at the college level has become more physical and deep women's teams like A&M and WVU use this to their advantage. As an official, you don't want to blow your whistle every time down the floor and call a foul, it makes for a miserable game for everyone. I'm not sure what the solution is--yes officials can crack down and hope the teams adjust, but in order for that to stick, it is a significant undertaking that needs to happen at all levels.
    Jay Bilas has been trumpeting this this season (Ideas on how to improve college basketball officiating - ESPN). Makes some GREAT points that are being discussed here. A good read regardless.



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