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Maine has a shortage of sports officials

Published: Jul. 21, 2021 at 1:39 PM EDT
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PRESQUE ISLE, Maine (WAGM) - The High School fall sports season is just a few weeks away and once again there could be a shortage of officials in all sports

Jeff Benson:”Those people who opted out due to COVID last year we are hoping they come back into the fold this year. That is a place to start.”

Benson says the problem doesn’t affect just one sport, they are in need of game officials for all sports season and all sports. He says they would love to have younger people get involved as officials. That is why they have put the word out to college students who might want to stay involved.

Benson:” I know we have done it at Bates at Bowdoin and at the University of Southern Maine.”

Benson says the assignors and athletic directors work very well together to ensure that the games are covered. He said that is concerned about all sports, but singles out wrestling for one reason.

Benson:” I will use wrestling as an example. We didn’t wrestling at all last year and didn’t have anything. That is a board that had roughly around 30 people. With them not having any opportunity last year. One of my concern this winter is how many of those 30 people are we going to get them all back.”

Benson says the lack officials is not just a Maine problem, but one all over the Country.

Benson:” One of the local soccer boards is looking to use HIgh School Students with an adult to do middle school games. A kid who is playing soccer won’t be able to do that because of practice, but if they do another sport and want to do games they could.”

He said that one soccer board in the State is experimenting with a plan to get younger people involved.

Benson:” It’s a problem everywhere. I speak with others who do the same kind of job I do and we are all in the same boat.”

If you are looking for more information and would like to officiate you can e mail Benson at jbenson@mpa.cc

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