- Call the school to: verify the time and site of the game. If you get a voice mail, request a call back. Verify with someone - do not assume anything.
- Call your partner to establish the time when each of you will arrive at the game site (at least ½ hour prior to the start of the game), and where you will meet and to decide on uniform colors.
Directory of School Districts / Athletic Directors available from BOCES or here (pdf)
For 2020, Section 1 or school district COVID Protocols may impose additional requirements. More details available on the COVID Resources page.
- Arrive 30 minutes before scheduled kickoff
- Meet partner in parking lot if possible and decide on uniform.
- OFFICIALS MUST BE DRESSED ALIKE. Walk onto the field together.
- Inspect field together - goals and nets, goalposts on goal line, goals secured, pace 12 yards for PK spot, pace 10 yards from corner arcs, etc. casual inspection of player equipment, jewelry during warmup...if you see any illegal or improper equipment instruct player and coach to remove it.
- Decide the side and end in which you and your partner will each start the game. Partners switch sides on the same end at halftime; and remain where they were in the 2nd half for any and all OT periods.
- Act businesslike, brief introduction to coaches (any conversation with coaches MUST be in language that both understand)
- Ask coaches for team rosters.
- Discuss the following:
About 5 minutes prior to kickoff -
- responsibility of lead and trail official during free kicks, especially deep in attacking zone: lead sets up wall if needed, trail at ball.
- areas of mutual coverage.
- review second whistle responsibility: lead gives second whistle on all free kicks. EXCEPTIONS: kick off, goal kick, some substitution situations.
- areas of difficult individual coverage, especially for lead official - responsibility of trail official to follow play and watch OFF THE BALL.
- COMMUNICATION through eye contact, voice, whistle, signals especially direct or indirect kick.
Call teams to the touchline for PRE-GAME PLAYER HANDSHAKE
- Meet with captains and HEAD coaches
- Inquire of each head coach whether each of his/her players will be properly and legally equipped at the kickoff.They must say, " YES."
- Read Sportsmanship Card in its entirety. THIS IS A NYSPHSAA REQUIREMENT.
- Briefly remind captains what you expect of them
- Toss coin
- Verify the score.
- At end of game, meet partner, shake hands, casually observe player handshake, walk off together.
- Decide who will make any necessary phone calls to BOCES or Association President re: ejections or unusual situations.
- Make sure to have player name, number, and school for online card report (if necessary)
- ALL yellow and red cards in ANY match must be reported to BOCES using the reporting form on this site. In addition, ALL ejections must be reported the day or evening of the match by phone or email to the President.