Notes from the Training Staff – June 2020

From our Chairperson Rich Kollen

What a crazy and sad time in our country, with the virus and civil unrest we are experiencing. I recently spent 22 hours on Zoom calls to develop plans for reopening California community college athletics. The committee addressed the health and safety of student athletes, coaches, fans, and staff, including officials. The other issue facing California community colleges is a drastic cut in funding, and you know athletics always takes a beating. I think we will be playing softball in January, and I will keep everybody updated as we hit our deadlines for reopening.

From our Assignors

Welcome to the 2021 college softball season! That’s what we usually say around this time of year. Unfortunately, all conferences are still in the planning stages. Decisions should be made by mid July as to the funds available, on-campus classes, spectators in gyms/on fields. Here is what we know so far….
Community Colleges.… Will play softball in the spring, However, some colleges are considering dropping some sports due to budgets & virtual classes which means lower budgets for all sports. They are focusing on plans for the fall season sports now and won’t make a final decision until mid-July. There are 3 proposed plans in place to play in the fall or spring, whichever works best based on those decisions
NAIA Conferences…. Will play softball in the spring. Decisions have not yet been made regarding fall contests. However, the schedule should be normal in the spring.
SCIAC…. Will play softball in the spring if the budget permits at each university. “Return to Play” is based on local county mandates and subject to State policy.
CCAA…. Will play softball in the spring, but no fall ball. The conference has lowered the maximum games that can be played to 44. Some other D2 conferences throughout the country have followed suit.
Pac-West…. no information yet
All Division 1… conferences are pending budgets, football & individual university decisions based on State/County policies for “Return to Play”
We will stay connected with all of you as we gain more information. Stay in shape! Stay healthy! As we we are a go for 2021.

From the Training Staff

Have you considered adding a “Personnel Thermometer” to your toolbox? Perhaps you should do this immediately if you are planning to work any games this summer.

Make sure you take the June 2020 test before the last day of the month. As we have done in the past, there will not be tests for the months of July and August. Although we expect college umpires to train year-round, we consider the “official” training for college umpires to start in September for the following year’s season, so we will continue the monthly tests in September. The assignors have told the training staff that this will be one consideration when the scheduling games for the 2021 season!

Another consideration is whether umpires are using the valuable resources available to them in the Locker Room. We continue to update this website with new and revised articles and videos. We recently did a complete review of all the articles. A special thanks to the members of the training staff who have reviewed, updated, and added additional information on many articles. Some have minor editorial changes; others have had additional information added. It might be a good time to review these again. See below for Revised articles.

Here is a list of the changes to the Locker Room since the last Notes from the Training Staff was posted in May.
New articles
Rules Corner/The Game/Field,Equipment,Uniforms– Optional Protective Equipment, Uniform regulations
Protocols Corner/Responsibilities – The Protocols for Ejections
Mechanics Corner/All Umpires/General – The Mechanics for Ejections

Revised articles
Rules Corner/Runner: Abandoning a Base, Collisions, Interference by Retired Runner
Rules Corner/The Game/Field,Equipment,Uniforms – Equipment article re-titled Required Equipment and expanded to include all required equipment.
Protocols Corner/Professionalism: “Good Job” Good Enough? Poor Impression Could Be You Last, Put a Bad Game in the Rear View Mirror, Someone is Always Watching and Listening, What it takes to be an Excellent Umpire, Detailed Instructions for Completing an Incident Report,

New videos
Game Management/Arguments – Ejection spin move

Have a safe and healthy summer. Keep in shape – look like an athlete and move like an athlete. Work on this during the summer, whether working games or not. The student-athletes continue to train; college umpires are expected to do the same.