On March 24, Ohio Rugby Referees Society hosted the Spring 2018 Level 1 Referee Certification class in Mentor, Ohio. This event was unique as Billy Koval, our referee development officer, programmed the course in conjunction with the North Coast Rugby Festival. Mr. Christopher Farroni, Director of RugbyOhio, and Mr. Kurt Weaver, USA Rugby and National Panel Referee, were both in attendance which made for a great day of rugby referee development.
New and veteran referees had access to the stadium press box, providing an unmatched view of the full field and perspective.
The “newbies class” spent some time in the classroom learning the basics of officiating but were then ushered out to the field, bumping noses with “real” referees. The class walked along the touchline with instructors, evaluating the game situations, necessary positioning, and quick referee decisions. Some of the class even helped the referees in the center by serving as assistant referee/touch judges, providing a hands-on learning experience beyond compare.
The mid-day match was the headliner for referee development. Andre Bruwer, Coach of Match Officials and Ohio Rugby Referees Society President, called the game as the Center Referee, with Kevin McNamara and Reneé Whittenberger as Assistant Referees. The team of three used a radio set which also fed to a speaker in the stadium press box, giving the observing L1 class full perspective on the match. Kurt Weaver and the L1 instructors narrated, discussed scenarios, answered questions, and explained the referees’ choices throughout the match.
Even experienced referees were treated to instruction and development. Reneé wore a radio for specific feedback and coaching in real time from Kurt Weaver and Andre Bruwer. Tim Levitsky and Kevin McNamara were also coached and their game videos reviewed by the Experts, throughout their field performances.
We also happened to see Mr. Weaver handing out swag gear like it was candy. Yes, ORRS has some kitmas to giveaway, courtesy of USA Rugby. You never know when Rugby Santa will have something for you!
We’re hoping to make this Experiential Level 1 Referee Certification Class an annual event. We like the way it worked out, we’re looking for feedback from participants, and we can’t wait to see the results.
Stay tuned for that and more next-level things from your Ohio Rugby Referees Society. Big things are happening!
Your ORRS Social Media Team