Snyde Clyde wrote:
Why the difference? It seems many here believe it is okay for an official to overlook small violations of the uniform rule. Is that only for dual meets, or for all meets? It seems a little hypocritical of this official to look the other way at one meet, but DQ someone at another meet for the same infraction. Comments?
As several people have pointed out, dual meets are a learing experience. I stated earlier that I never allow a uniform violation to go unnoticed, but I choose to not DQ the athlete in dual meets especially early in the season. Every time I see a violation, I inform both the athlete and his/her coach what is improper about the uniform so that it can be corrected in the future. I also make sure they understand that there will be no leniency at the regional/state meets by any officials. I have no tolerance for jewelry because it can be a safety issue - either the jewelry comes off or the athlete does not compete. But if a runner has a visible logo on the tights he's wearing under his shorts I am not going to DQ him.
I could probably DQ 4x400 and 4x800 relay teams every dual meet for the same reason - standing outside the exchange zone. Instead, I go over to the runner and tell him that he needs to be inside the zone and that at states they will not give him a warning. As an official my policy is to correct problems rather than just throw out DQs like a tyrant. It's easy to say, "It's the coach's fault" for the DQ. That is true, but sadly the coaches often do not know the rules themselves. And who suffers? Not the coach but the innocent athlete.
I don't officiate to feed my ego. Like most officials, I do it because I love the sport. I volunteer to act as starter for a high school just to help them out. If you want to do things differently and enforce the rules as strictly as possible, then feel free to do so. That is your perogative.