The Umpire stopped the clock with a raised open hand and signals A-1 traveled, while the Referee stopped play with a closed fist before signaling B-1 for a pushing foul. How should this be handled?
Now if you have been officiating for any length of time, you likely have experienced first-hand, or know a referee who has been caught up in the unenviable situation of, dealing with block/charge (sometimes referred to as a “blarge”) scenarios that have two officials blowing their whistle and both giving differing preliminary signals.
We all know from the safe confines of the sidelines, that the root of the problem is offering a preliminary signal, especially in an area of dual responsibility, without taking a quick glance/listen for our partner’s raised clenched fist/whistle, on a bang-bang ruling.
But that is ground we will plow on another day…
Today’s REF 60 post deals with double whistles involving a violation and a personal foul.
You blow your whistle to rule a travel; and your partner blows their whistle and has a foul.
Two referees standing with their arms raised — you with an open hand; and your partner with a clenched fist.
What do you?
Let’s add a little more texture to this picture we’ve painted.
In a scholastic contest (NFHS), the Umpire blows their whistle, believing that A-1 traveled as A-1 was being tenaciously guarded by B-1…However, at nearly the exact same time, the Referee blows their whistle to call a foul on B-1.
Many coaches in today’s game, and even fans, are sophisticated enough to spot the open hand for a violation, and a closed fist for a foul…More times than not, the officials won’t be able to discreetly cover their tracks and they will have to untangle this mess.
The key component to understand is, you can’t enforce both rulings...
This is NOT like a block-charge (double-foul or sometimes called “blarge”) scenario.
There is no rules coverage to administer the acts as occurring simultaneously.
Something happened first; the violation or the foul, and you have to quickly make the correct determination.
If the officials decided the violation occurred first, the ball becomes dead, and the personal foul by B-1 would be ignored, unless it was deemed intentional or flagrant.
If the crew agreed the contact by B-1 caused A-1 to travel, then the foul would be enforced.
Maintaining good eye contact with your partner (or partners in 3-person), and to be listening for the sound of another whistle being blown, particularly on plays in the areas of dual coverage, will go along way to reducing the number of differing preliminary signals on double whistles that you will find yourself ensnared in this season.
NFHS Casebook 2.6. A-B