Be sure to check your email and voice mail after Wednesday night this week because you may be contacted by athletic directors regarding district tournament assignments.  Remember, the actual contracts for those assignments will be on the MSHSAA website at some point (it might not be right away) and that will be how you get paid.  Acknowledging an assignment on email or over the phone is not the same thing as accepting the contract on the MSHSAA website!   MSHSAA will assign sectionals and state referees shortly thereafter.  Good luck!



At the last meeting, we talked about these videos, so if you weren’t there, you can check these out.  Remember, the rule about liberos using finger action on or in front of the ten-foot line to set an attacker doesn’t only apply to the second and third contacts.  Check out these two videos:


In this video, the R1 allowed play to continue because, in his judgment, the ball was not completely above the height of the net on the attack (the setter dumping the ball on the second contact).



In this video, the libero takes also takes the first ball and the front row player takes the ball with two hands and presses it against the opponent’s blocker for the second contact.  That would be considered an attack and since the preceding contact came from a libero using finger action in front of the attack line, that would be illegal.



Remember that an R2 should only blow the whistle on a substitution request when the head coach makes the request or when an incoming player actually enters the sub zone.  The whistle should not be blown if a player on the court is requesting a sub or if the incoming player hasn’t actually entered the zone.



  1. Since we don’t allow mutual serving (in other words, teams serving at each other) during dual matches, is it allowed during warmups for tournaments?  ANSWER:  According to Davine at MSHSAA, that is a matter for schools and tournament directors to decide.  For instance, a five-minute warmup could be 2-2-1 (2 minutes hitting for each team, 1 minute mutual serving) or 2:30-2:30 (each team gets 2:30 on the net with serving occurring within a team’s own time).
  2. I have been at a school that has non moveable basket ball back boards that are down but not over the playable area. The other referees wanted to call a replay if the ball hit the backboard. I did not want to disagree. Last year, myself and the other referees agreed to “If the ball would have been unplayable, gone out of bounds, a out of bounds signal is given. If the ball could have been played, play should continue.”  What is correct?  ANSWER:  If you are describing it correctly, you stated that the backboards are not over a playable area, so they would be out.  However, If you meant to say the backboards are not over the playing court, but are over playable area, they would be considered vertical backboards and play should be whistled dead upon contacting the backboard for a decision using referee’s discretion on whether it is out or if a replay should be granted.
  3. Another person asked about whether play should continue if a player’s shoe comes off during play.  ANSWER:  We addressed this a couple of weeks ago.  Here’s what came from Davine at MSHSAA:  “My interpretation would be the play should whistled dead to allow the student to put the shoe back on and a replay.    Rule 4-2-6 states appropriate playing shoes shall be worn.  I interpret this to mean at all times and if a shoe were to come off during play I would not support tossing the shoe off the court and continuing play.  I view this as more of an immediate safety issue if the student slips or someone steps on her foot.  If the shoe continually comes off, an unnecessary delay can be issued.”
  4. I was at Barstow the other day and there is like a big air conditioning (or something) unit that runs above the net parallel to it. In my understanding of the rules, a ball has to touch the ceiling when going over the net to be considered “out”. However, the unit is so big everyone loses sight of the ball for a good second or two. If a ball (serve or other) simply goes over it without touching anything, according to the rule, it is still playable – correct? I’m curious if you would address that differently during the pre-game and say it is out no matter what?  ANSWER:  This is something that should definitely be addressed during the captains meeting pre-game.  Rule 2-2-1 states that as long as the ball strikes the ceiling or overhead obstruction and comes back down on the same side of the net as the team who last played the ball, it’s playable as long as that team has contacts remaining.  There’s no stipulation about whether the ball is visible the entire time.  If it goes over the obstruction completely without touching anything and goes over to the other side of the net, play should continue.



Overall, I haven’t gotten nearly the number of questions and situations I normally get at this point of the year.  I hope that means that our matches are going well and are incident-free!  If so, KEEP UP THE GREAT WORK!  If not, make sure you let me know via the Dropbox or an email about situations we can all learn from.  Keep up the great debriefs!  We are all mentors, and we are all mentees!



Remember, I will put out a video of some sort next Sunday on YouTube as our last meeting of the season.  There will be an online “sign in” sheet to indicate that you’ve watched the video for it to count as an attended meeting for purposes of being able to vote in GKCOA elections later this year.  Again, please let me know if you have questions or situations you would like to see addressed.