Hey Ref! You’re Needed

It’s a problem that you may have missed – until your child’s game gets rescheduled or cancelled because there aren’t enough referees.

The shortage of game officials is not unique to central Kansas but a nationwide problem to find enough umpires and refs to work between the lines.

Salina Recreation Supervisor Travis Sheele oversees all the programs at the Salina Fieldhouse and says the problem is real.

“There’s a lot of factors, he said. “I think time, dedication, it’s not for everybody and you have to have a job that’s somewhat flexible.”

Unruly fans/parents can also ruin the sportsmanlike atmosphere. Sheele says 90-percent of fans are well behaved but it’s the 10-percent of fans that has made officiating an island no one wants to live on.

Sheele joined in on the KSAL Morning News Extra Tuesday with encouragement for people who want to give back to the game they love by becoming an official.


Youth game officials make $20 to $35 an hour and sometimes ref three games a night. Officials who become KSHSAA certified for high school games can make substantially more per game.


To learn more about job opportunities at the Salina Fieldhouse, call Recreation Supervisor Travis Sheele at 785- 838-7088.