The Colorado High School Activities Association, AKA CHSAA, AKA Chassa, is the governing body for all High School Sports in Colorado. They set the Schedules, They make the Trophies, and they Hire the Refs. Unfortunately, they are having a tough time finding officiating crews for all the sports they have going on.
Traditionally, Friday nights have been known as High School football nights, but because they don’t have enough staff, they may switch some games to other nights during the week. Opening Night is supposed to be Thursday, August 25th, with 23 Games being played across the state. Each game needs 5 Officials, so you’re looking at 115 For Thursday, which CHSAA can handle. The real problem will be the Friday Night, August 26th when 92 Games are Scheduled. As of right now, they do not have 460 people ready to put on the stripes. The top reasons given for why there’s a lack of Refs are rude parents and athletes, and low pay. A ref for a Varsity football game will make $64.72 a game. Refs are needed for all sports though, with slightly lower rate of pay.
How do you become a ref? Hopefully you’ve already competed in the sport, and have a good knowledge of the rules. Start off at HighSchoolOfficials.com. They’ll give you the basics on what to learn in each sport, what to look for, and to find out if being a ref is right for you. Eventually you will need to pass the National Federation of High School Associations Exam. Once you have proven you know how to ref, you will contact the CHSAA Board Director of your sport. They will put you in touch with someone who will get you on the schedule ASAP. It’s just that easy, right?
You never knows where reffing may take you. Currently there are 70,000 High School Refs, which is the entry level position in the ref world. After a few years doing High school games, you would be eligible for College games, where the median income is about $57K a year. If you start early, stick with it, and get good, about .17% of High school Refs will eventually make it to an NFL game. That may seem low, but the odds of any given High School Player making it in the NFL are about 0.00075%.