CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WNCN) — Being an official is one of the hardest and most criticized jobs in sports, and the North Carolina High School Athletic Association tells CBS 17 it’s still facing a shortage.
Association leaders said they’ve been in situations this year where they’re scrambling to find officials for a game. They raised pay by 10 percent last December and more people are signing up but they still have a long way to go.
Commissioner Que Tucker says one of the main reasons some people aren’t coming back is because of bad behavior from the fans — and some coaches and players.
“One of the things officials have been saying is the sportsmanship is bad,” said Tucker. “People felt empowered to say whatever they want and that was causing some of our officials to say ‘I don’t have to take this kind of abuse.’”
The association worked with athletic directors to change schedules up this year to work around the shortage.
“Maybe in basketball, instead of playing your Tuesday-Friday, we’ve been able to get some of them to say ‘Okay, I’ll schedule my game on Wednesday,’” said Tucker.
NCHSAA has a page on its website for people interested in becoming a official.