WAGS R&D Committee Meeting
Fairview Park Marriott
May 27, 2009
Committee Members Present: Lula Bauer (Director) Clarence Jones, Sally D’Italia, Amy Thompson, Kley Parkhurst, Robert Vincent, Michelle White (Administrator).
SMU Rockets Team Members Present: Head Coach, Team Manager, Club Representative & STAR
CHAN Panthers Team Members Present: Head Coach, Assistant Coach, Team Manager, TSL, STAR, (3) Parents & (5) Players
CHAN Panthers (U12 D5B); alleged violation of WAGS Rules J.7.b., K.10 & Coach’s Code of Conduct.
SMU Rockets filed a protest pertaining to the CHAN Panthers Head Coach (CHAN HC) in violation of WAGS Rules J.7.b., K.10 & Coach’s Code of Conduct.
The meeting started at approximately 8:00pm. After introductions were made, the R&D Director explained the hearing procedures.
The Center Referee submitted a written report in lieu of attending the scheduled hearing. He made several points. The CR states the CHAN HC loudly dissented regarding his call with “multiple insults” including, “that’s the worst call I’ve seen in twenty years.” At this time the CHAN HC was issued a red card for “offensive, abusive, INSULTING, foul language.” The CR further asserts that the CHAN HC did not immediately leave the pitch and continued “to instruct his team.” The CR asked the CHAN Assistant Coach (CHAN AC) to assist in getting the CHAN HC to leave the vicinity of the pitch as his next course of action would be to abandon the match. The CHAN HC left the pitch but remained close. After the match, the CR states that the CHAN HC returned to the pitch and “debriefed his team.”
The Referee Assignor for St. Mary’s County (Assignor) also submitted a statement in lieu of attendance. At about the same time, the Assignor stated that he was officiating a match on a pitch adjacent to the SMU Rockets/CHAN Panthers’ match. He heard the CHAN HC scream at the CR that it is “the worst call I’ve seen in 20 years.” He observed the CR award a red card to the CHAN HC. At his match’s halftime; the Assignor observed the CHAN team walk over toward the parking lot which he thought was odd considering the layout of the pitch. He asked the CR as to why the red card was issued and observed the CHAN team sitting about 10 yards from the CHAN HC. The SMU Head Coach (SMU HC) alerted the CR and the Assignor that the CHAN HC was still coaching his team. After clarifying with the CR that it was indeed the CHAN HC, the Assignor told the CHAN team that they needed to move away from the CHAN HC to which they complied.
The SMU Rockets Team Manager (SMU TM) began her testimony by stating that she was an acting coach because the SMU HC was late due to coaching another team. She asked the CR if the STAR could assist her with the rules. She stated that the CR had made a call, and the CHAN HC loudly dissented the call. The CR tried to get the CHAN HC to calm down, but he continued to yell at the CR and was issued a red card. The CR explained to the CHAN HC that if he continued he would issue a forfeit. The SMU TM asserted that as the CHAN HC passed their bench he called the girls an expletive and placed himself behind the goal where he still instructed his team. The SMU TM further testified that the CR had to stop play and inform the CHAN HC to leave the pitch or he would award a forfeit. The CHAN HC retreated to his vehicle and parked it in the spot behind the goal. The SMU TM asserted that he continued to instruct his team from his vehicle. At half time, the CHAN AC took his entire team across the pitch to where the CHAN HC was parked. The SMU TM stated that the CR had the Assignor talk to the CHAN HC at which time the CHAN team moved away from the CHAN HC’s vehicle and return to the pitch to begin the second half of the match.
The SMU HC began his testimony by stating that he arrived at the match approximately 8 minutes after it started. At half time, he noticed the CHAN team was in the parking lot next to the CHAN HC’s vehicle and alerted the CR. He testified that the Assignor walked over to the CHAN team and the CHAN HC, and then he saw the CHAN team return to the pitch.
The SMU STAR testified by reading his submitted statement. His statement supports the SMU TM and the SMU HC regarding the call made by the CR and the red card issued. He testified that the CHAN HC loudly argued with the CR regarding the call. He further asserts that the CHAN HC continued to coach the girls as he was exiting the pitch as well as coaching them from his vehicle. He stated that the CHAN AC was observed to be communicating on his cell phone with the CHAN HC who was in his vehicle behind the goal. At half time, he observed the CHAN team walk over to the CHAN HC but the CHAN team was instructed to leave the area by the Assignor. The SMU STAR submitted pictures showing the pitch and the place where each teams’ benches were located as well as pictures of the CHAN HC vehicle during the time of the match.
The SMU TM was asked who heard the expletive used to which the SMU TM replied that the SMU players, the STAR, a parent as well as herself.
A Committee member asked where the parent was standing who heard the expletive to which the SMU TM stated that she was across the pitch.
At the conclusion of the SMU testimony, a CHAN mother requested if she could remove the players outside to avoid hearing anything that would negatively impact them.
The CHAN team began their testimony by asking the players that came to support the team to be excused as they didn’t feel comfortable having them in the room. Their request was granted. The players remained out of the room until the end of the hearing.
The CHAN HC began his testimony by stating that the accusations are false. He further stated that he has been coaching for the past twenty years holding several coaching licenses. He said that he disagreed with the CR’s call, and did show dissent, but it wasn’t to the level of a red card. After receiving a red card, he said that he immediately walked down the sideline to his car only asking once at the 18 yard line what the reason was for the red card to which the CR replied that it was for foul and abusive language. He was uncertain what to do having never received a red card before in his coaching career. He went to the parking lot and sat there until the CHAN AC told him that he needed to sit in his car. He testified that the CHAN TSL asked the CR if he could sit in his car to which the CR said that he could. At half time, the CHAN AC approached his vehicle with the team and the CHAN HC told his team they needed to move the team as he could have no contact with them. He further testified that he spoke with the Assignor about appealing the red card. The CHAN HC completed his testimony by stating that he was not hostile and he did not use any foul language.
The CHAN Team Manager (CHAN TM) began her testimony by stating that it is her first year as the manager of the team, and she is not familiar with all the WAGS’ rules. She stated that she didn’t hear any expletives used by CHAN HC and that the CR was by the SMU Rockets’ bench when the expletive was alleged to have been said. She further testified that the CHAN HC called her at halftime to get a statement from the CR. She believed that the CHAN HC arranged with the CR to stay in his vehicle during the match. She concluded her testimony by stating that she pointed out her TSL who was standing on the parents’ sideline.
The CHAN AC testified that he did not hear any expletives by the CHAN HC but he did hear the CHAN HC state that “it is the worst call in 20 years” to which the CR issued the red card. The CR instructed the CHAN AC to assist in removing the CHAN HC. The CHAN AC further stated that the SMU TM started screaming at the CHAN HC. He further testified that permission was given by the CR for the CHAN HC to remain in his car during his match.
The CHAN STAR testified that the CR talked to the CHAN TSL before the match. He further testified that he did not hear any profanity. He did not see the CHAN HC talk or look at the SMU team.
The CHAN TSL testified that the CR stated that if the CHAN HC did not leave the pitch that he would forfeit the match in 1 ½ minutes. The CHAN TSL stated permission was obtained for the CHAN HC to remain in his vehicle during the match. He further testified that the CHAN team never entered the black top near parking lot at half time.
A CHAN parent testified that it was windy on the day of the match, but you could hear everything being said. He didn’t hear any foul language nor did he observe the CHAN team sitting near the CHAN HC’s vehicle during half time.
Several statements were submitted on behalf of CHAN Panthers by parents and players which were read and entered as testimony. These statements stated that the CHAN HC did not use foul language during the match. It was also stated that the CHAN HC did not give instruction to his team.
A Committee member asked if the CHAN HC addressed the team on the pitch after the match to which the CHAN HC replied that he returned to the pitch just to retrieve his bench and personal items but did not address his team or walk onto the pitch.
Another Committee member asked why the CHAN AC would walk across the pitch near the SMU bench at half time to talk to the team instead of taking the team to the corner of the pitch where the CHAN bench was located to which the CHAN AC responded by saying that he didn’t really think about it but wanted his team to sit in the shade.
The Director explained that profanity does not have to be used for a referee to issue a red card for Offensive, Abusive, and Insulting language. It is the referee’s judgment as to what they consider insulting.
The hearing was concluded around 9:20 pm.
After the deliberation, the Committee directed the following:
The Committee concluded after hearing the testimony and reviewing the CR’s report that is lacks factual sufficiency to determine if an expletive was used by the CHAN HC.
The Committee concluded that the CHAN TSL was present and appropriately standing on the CHAN parents’ sideline. Therefore, the Committee determines that the CHAN Panthers did not violate WAGS Rule J.7.b.
However, the Committee concluded that the CHAN HC did violate WAGS Rule K.10 by not remaining out of sight and sound when issued his red card. Therefore, the Committee awards a forfeit by the CHAN Panthers.
The SMU Rockets and the CHAN Panthers U12 Division 5B was informed that they have the right to appeal the decision of the WAGS R & D Committee according to Rule O, Protest and Appeals Procedures.
Lula E. Bauer, Director, WAGSL R&D Committee