Love playing sports but also want to officiate? Great news! You can do both at UT RecSports. We asked two intramural participants/officials, Danny Bacic (DB) and Nathan Ha (NH)to give you the inside scoop on how you can work where you play!
Can you play and officiate the same sports?
DB: Yes! Our management staff works hard to provide opportunities for you to challenge yourself and to improve as an official while avoiding any situations that present a personal conflict. I encourage everyone to join us!
NH: Students are allowed to officiate and play the same sports! We don’t allow officials to work the games that their teams play against. I’ve been told by officials from other campuses that they are not allowed to participate in sports that they officiate. This makes our program unique in that sense.
Is there time to play and work?
DB: I have had the privilege of being on at least 55 different rosters while at UT. During this time, I’ve been able to play and officiate heartily. Since games are always played in the evenings, it was quite rare that it would conflict with anything academic. As an intramural staff member and official, I was able to play so much because of our flexible schedules.
NH: It can sometimes be difficult to balance participation and officiating, but other officials are really good in covering an hour or two for you to play in your game. Also, it is very easy to ask your supervisor for weekly time off in order to participate in your intramural games.
What is so cool about playing and officiating?
DB: Being able to play and officiate means you get to see all perspectives of the sport you love. My primary sport coming from high school was soccer. I grew up playing it, and I loved all aspects of the sport: playing, managing, and officiating. Working for the Intramural Sports program at UT allowed me to experience all sides of this. After meeting amazing people that felt the same way about other sports, I decided to try new sports. It was through my time as a player that I was introduced to volleyball, ultimate, flag football, and futsal. I owe my personal growth to the opportunity to work where I played.
NH: Playing and reffing the same sports gives you a different perspective on the game. It has really allowed me to see the game in a way which I never really thought about. As a player, you never really think about what the officials are watching for and thinking about but being a player and official has made me appreciate sports even more than before!
Ref Some, Play Some!
DB: People tend to ask me about playing and officiating the same sport. I have discovered that playing and officiating the same sport teaches you to become a better official and player. Being so involved allowed me to meet countless other students and faculty who love the same sports I do. I was able to learn from my peers while watching other teams compete.
NH: I mainly play basketball, flag football and volleyball because those are the sports that I consider myself “decent at.” As for officiating, I officiate all sports except for soccer since I’m very inexperienced when it comes to it and I’ve never really understood the sport as a whole, but I’m always up to learn something new whenever I can.