Spencer Crum–  My name is Spencer Crum and I’m the proud president of the North Bay Officials Organization (the Sonoma County football refs) and also ironically the proud parent of two Petaluma High School students. Yes, this loss and poor call (actually this and the Analy call) hurts me as well so I understand your anger and frustration.
I was at the game last night as a Petaluma parent. I have also officiated high school football for 18 years and trust me, I’ve had my share of bad calls. We all do at one time or another. Let me set some things straight. Our organization has 80 officials locally and we are about 20 people short of getting all the games covered.
We provide the best possible training to all our officials utilizing all the current technology available. We have 4 training meetings, 3 study groups, take 4 tests every year and get evaluated on every game. Our local officials do a tremendous job a good majority of the time.
On the playoffs we have mixed crews. Last night we had 5 officials from 3 different officiating organizations who have never met each other prior. The official who ruled on this call was not a Sonoma County official. Prior to that inexplicable call there were no issues with the officiating.
It was a very normal game. For some reason the covering official wasn’t paying attention or got it wrong somehow and ruled the runner down so while the ball was loose he blew the whistle. The 4 other officials disagreed so we have the rule of inadvertent whistle during a loose ball which gave the ball back to Rancho.
Yes he made a mistake, yes he is upset over his mistake, no we don’t do it for the money, yes we all lost a lot of sleep over this, yes it is being addressed in the officiating world, no we cannot change it, yes we are disappointed in the call, yes we all want to get the call right, yes unfortunately we will get it wrong again, yes we are all human beings and yes as an official and Petaluma HS parent I feel equally as bad as all of you.
Hopefully I answered your questions and yes, I look forward to meeting many of you in late July at the first training meeting. If you want anything else answered you can send me a respectful private message. I won’t answer any bashing sessions as I know the call was wrong and I am sorry.