Commissioner's Corner Additional Lessons Learned since last report

Issuing Second Caution and Time Wasting

May 2, 2004
a. Issuing Second Caution to a Player - We had a situation where a referee issued a second caution (soft red)to a player and allowed the cautioned player's replacement to enter the field prior to the carded player leaving the field. On the way to the sideline, the cautioned player used foul and abusive language to the referee resulting the soft red to change to a hard red. No problem with the change of card from soft to a hard red, but by allowing the substitute to enter the field, the cautioned player was NO LONGER the player of record, so the offending team did not have to play a player down. Recommend Procedure - When issuing a caution to a player allow the player to leave the field of play prior to allowing a substitute to enter the field. This accomplishes two important objectives. First, it takes some of the tension out of the game and allows everyone to refocus on the game, and second, if the offending player does something while leaving the field that warrants a hard ejection, he remains the player of record.
b. Time Wasting - A team is ahead late in the game is taking its' time on throw-ins and free kicks in an effort to run time off the clock. If the referee team feels that the time wasting is intentional and denying the opponents the opportunity for fair play, then you as the referee team have the ability to stop time so as not to penalize the losing team by use of this tactic. Recommended Procedure - Notify the captains and coach of the offending team to put the ball in play in a timely manner, if this does not happen then stop the clock at each instance that you feel the offending team is deliberately wasting time. One caution - if the referee team has been not encouraging getting the ball in play throughout the game, this becomes a more difficult situation. This situation is usually reduced if there are sufficient ball personnel available. If there are NOT sufficient ball personnel, then the Referee Team needs to halt the game until there is AT LEAST one ball person on each side of the field (VARSITY ONLY).