The Northeast Alabama Football Officials Association is looking for new members to work the sidelines and booths this fall.

For those interested in officiating games and earning some extra money this football season, there’s still time to join the association and become an Alabama High School Athletic Association football official.

Eric Scott, who is a seven-year veteran official for the AHSAA, said no officiating experience is necessary to become an official. 

“We have training, we go over rules, we have weekly meetings where we cover rules, training scenarios,” Scott said.

Scott covers junior high, junior varsity and varsity games for the Northeast Alabama Football Officials Association. He said the first step to becoming a member is to join a local association.

Andy Robertson (256-504-3274); Jeff Young (256-609-4784); and Scott (256-608-1274) are among the contacts for the northeast area who can help those interested in becoming a member.

Meetings will be at the Guntersville Parks and Recreation Center, located at 1500 Sunset Drive in Guntersville at 6:30 p.m. Wednesdays, beginning July 22. The association will have weekly meetings to cover rules and training.

The association covers junior high, junior varsity and varsity games for Jackson County, DeKalb County, Marshall County, Madison County and Blount County.

Field officials for a varsity game will be paid $110 each as a five-person crew and $100 each as a seven-person crew. Varsity clock operators will be paid $55 each.

“As far as training, we do video training to go over certain plays and certain rules,” Scott said. “We work scrimmages and practices with our contracted teams, so before we put you on the field, you would be trained by a veteran official.”

A typical work week consists of two-three nights of officiating games from the junior high to varsity levels.

“If you want to work more, you can. If you want to work less, you can,” Scott said.

Officials are required to purchase their own uniforms and equipment, such as flags and whistles. The Northeast Alabama Football Officials Association requires association and state fees for members.

Scott said most of the rule changes for the upcoming season will involve new equipment required to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus, although there is one specific rule change in place: When a quarterback is in a shotgun position, they can now legally spike the ball to save time where in past years they had to be directly under center to spike the ball and stop the clock.

For additional officiating information, visit the AHSAA’s website and click under the officials tab. 

› Glendon Poe is the sports editor of The Times-Journal in Fort Payne.

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