Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Get With the Program

The new PSP reffing program, that is. Much to my chagrin (okay, not really but it seems like the sort of thing I probably ought to feel chagrin over) I have neglected to inform you, the loyal VFTD reader, just what the PSP is doing to upgrade the quality and consistency of the officiating. Since, you know, I'm sorta involved on a nearly daily basis in the process. Or, if you are of a cynical or conspiratorial bent you might consider this post VFTD selling out. Despite being both cynical and conspiratorial I don't see it that way but if I didn't myself better I'd be suspicious too.
For starters the logistics of the program have been revamped completely. Brought up to speed with what the league is doing with teams and players. Refs now register with APPA, are issued an ID card, sign in at the event just like the players and receive their field assignment at registration. PSP refs can even sign up for events like the teams do and the pay scale (which used to be rather haphazard and inconsistent) now has a tiered scale of daily pay rates based on experience, effectiveness and availability beginning at $150 a day for a new to the PSP referee. Now that the league has entered the 21st century with the reffing program it allows us to keep comprehensive records which not only make the ref's job just a tiny bit easier but makes it possible for us to track and evaluate our refs more efficiently. Our goal is to put 10 refs on every field and limit the number of "new" guys per field so that we can accelerate the development of the less experienced refs by surrounding them with seasoned refs. We also have a dedicated web forum just for PSP referees where they can blow off steam, talk about unusual situations that come up and generally discuss the business of reffing in the PSP.
Long term the goal is to grow the pool of certified PSP refs so that we not only don't suffer short falls at any events but so we can reward the best refs and provide a consistent level of excellence on the field at the events. And that process begins at our reffing clinics.
The actual clinic and training are of course classified top secret so I can't reveal any details here. Okay, that's a blatant lie but it sounds better than the truth. The truth is it's late and I don't want this post to go too long so I may (or may not) get around to talking about the certification (and recertification) clinics and how and why they are different from previous efforts--in another post sometime. I will say though that the critical difference is in the focus on what's important and the attitude and deportment the league expects in its referees.
Come to that I will also say that in my admittedly limited experience so far the great majority of refs both new and old are excited about the changes, the league's commitment to the process and energized by the prospect of being PSP referees. And that's a good beginning.
(This post was brought to you by the PSP. Not really but I know some of y'all can't help thinking maybe it's true.)

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

As a Psp official over the past several seasons, I must say I am impressed what one off season can do for change. The simple fact that officials are provided a good wholesome lunch that energizes, rather than making us feel like bunkers, is a good start. Keep up the good start and finish strong

Matt Criscione said...

Hoping this will lead to a better playing experience overall. Riverside reffing was very frustrating. Not only new refs, but new to the sport in general. I over heard a couple experienced refs reminding a new one thst bounced paintballs dont count as an elimination. And personally talked to a ref who has never seen competitive paintball before. I know quality refs are hard to come by, so lets pray this works out better...

Anonymous said...

It would be nice to have some more publicity for ref clinics. I had one in my area but found out about it the day it happened.

Anonymous said...

Slight of hands won't fool us. Pretending to run interference for PSP maxx with ref puff pieces won't help. Give me an empty field while I bitch at my teammates in the pits before the next point or give me death!

Baca Loco said...

1239 Anon
I'd be happy to comply. What do you suggest?

137 Anon
I object to that characterization. It wasn't a puff piece--it was informative without being (too) boring.
And you forgot to capitalize MAXX.

Anonymous said...

This is where I would typically come to see the new PSP reffing program torn apart...

Baca Loco said...

534 Anon
You say that like I'm always negative. :)

Anonymous said...

Hmm... maybe posts on the PSP facebook or something on PBNation? I personally feel having more players trained in at least the rudimentary aspects of reffing would make a smoother operation for everyone at tournaments; better understanding of the actions of refs. The problem then of course is getting people to attend.