An unneeded blemish was placed on the Lady Redskins’ win Friday night, but not by the team or even a fan.
An overreaching official took it upon himself to dismiss Ron Warden for a comment he deemed inappropriate.
With only a couple of minutes remaining in a Lady Redskin rout of Perryton, a foul was called on the floor.
I heard warden say, “Don’t anticipate the contact. Wait for the foul to make the call.”
The game was halted, the official went to the scorers table, and the official had an assistant principal remove Warden from the gym.
I could only think of two possible scenarios going through the official’s mind when making the call. One was that Warden’s observation hit a little too close to home, or he wanted to show he was in charge.
I have been covering sports for a long, long time. Warden’s comment rates in the insult range of about a one or a two on a 10-point scale.
Warden didn’t say, “That was a horrible call,” which is probably the most common statement I hear anywhere I go.
He didn’t say, “You’re blind,” which is probably the second most popular shot at the ref.
Warden’s was a bit more cerebral. “Don’t anticipate.”
That’s a big word and obviously offensive to one particular referee.
It was not said with expletives, malice or even with a threatening tone. If anything, it was said in a way that sounded more like correcting a friend.
But the no-tolerance society does not allow for any rebuke of any kind.
Officials should be respected. They have the whistle. But voicing a concern as benign as Warden’s certainly didn’t seem to reach the level of an ejection.
Whoever chooses the officiating crew should watch video on this and either reign in the official or find another one.
He tainted an otherwise good game.