Members of the SOCCER-COACH-L LOTG Project were Chris Mohr (Project Coordinator), Jim Geissman, David Graham, Jim MacQueen, Connie Matthies, Jim Meinhold, Gary Rue, Ken Smith, Dave Teetz and Ron Tremper.
Members of the project team are grateful to Andy Reyes, longtime referee instructor in Raleigh, N.C., for his time and attention spent thoroughly reviewing this LOTG FAQ before its release, and for making many helpful, detailed suggestions to improve its accuracy and correctly convey the fine points of the rules of soccer to our readers. One important point: as they say in academia, any remaining errors and omissions are to be attributed solely to us, and not to him. In other words, if we didn't get something right, or inadvertently left something out, it's not his fault! We probably changed something, forgot to show it to him, or dropped the ball on his recommendation.
Chris Mohr (Project Coordinator) originally conceived this project, organized the team, parcelled out the drafting assignments and ably coordinated what grew into something far more complex than he or anyone had anticipated. To him belongs the lion's share of the credit for its realization.
Chris is currently head coach of a U-9 girls' team (the Falcons) in Raleigh, NC, both as an outdoor and as an indoor team. He holds a NCYSA 'D' coaching license as well as being a USSF grade 8 referee. Until the end of the Fall '97 season, he was also head coach of the U-14 Angels girls' rec team in CASL. Chris plays on both an outdoor team and an indoor soccer team, both in the field and at goalkeeper (he has a spiffy Diadora goalie jersey with rubber studs on the arms and shoulders to help him hold on to the ball -- he modestly says he needs all the help he can get). On in-season weekends, he switches quickly from coaching the Falcons to refereeing, where he will now be joined by his older daughter Carolyn, who just passed her referee certification. Chris says his appreciation and understanding of this great game have vastly benefitted from becoming a referee, not just with respect to the LOTG, but from the opportunity to observe play up close as a dispassionate observer (and to observe the coaches from an on-field perspective, too!).
For some reason Jim Geissman was always attracted to soccer and made the team in his freshman year at UC Riverside in 1962. The highlight of that career, according to Jim, was a loss to UCLA by only 1-0. ;-} From then on, he played occasionally and socially (during 11 years in Australia) until returning to Los Angeles and joining an over-30 team in 1979 -- and refereeing AYSO for fun. Ruining a knee stopped all that. Jim's younger daughter joined AYSO in 1994 when she was 6, and he resumed refereeing and playing (outdoor and indoor), and last year he started coaching her team, which of course turned out to be the most fun and satisfying of all. Jim is currently an AYSO Intermediate Coach and Section Referee, USSF 8 Referee, high school (NF) referee, and AYSO referee instructor. He can be found in the SOCREF-L Hall of Flame.
David Grahamfirst became interested in coaching when his older son almost left soccer at the age of 7 after his first year. Since that time, now more years ago than David cares to remember, he has coached several age groups (U10 through U17) in both recreational and competitive soccer. Most recently, he was lucky enough to act as one of the assistant coaches for the MUN Lady Sea-Hawks in their very successful 1997 season. David is currently (January 1998) involved as an apprentice coach at the NSA Regional Training Centre in St John's, Newfoundland, where he works with elite U15 players aspiring to be members of the 1998 provincial U15 team. He's a certified Level II Coach under the National Coaching Certification Programme of Canada, has also completed his Level III Technical and Theory courses, and says he hopes to pass his 'C' license in 1998 or 1999. David is a Class III Referee (Canada), but his interest in refereeing is primarily that of a coach, not that of a 'real' official. He plays indoor soccer once a week in the winter with a bunch of other geezers, which helps to remind him to have realistic expectations of players.
In addition to his own drafting assignments, David also acted as web designer and final editor for this project, assembling the various contributions into web-ready form and integrating the corrections which were made to the files as they were revised by members of the project team in preparation for publication.
Connie Matthies has a USSF "D" Coaching License, and is also an 08 Referee. She got involved in coaching and refereeing at the Jenks Soccer Club in Tulsa, Oklahoma when her son was 11 years old (but that blasted little kid grew up along the way; learned lots more about soccer than mom; and is now playing for his high school varsity team, as well as for a BASC competitve team). With time on her hands, and an urge to keep bossing a bunch of little boys around (which she really couldn't do any more with her son's teams), she volunteered to be "recycled". She currently is the head coach for an U10 boys team (JSC Twisters) whose former coach unexpectedly was transferred. When she is not coaching games for her U10 team, or cheering on her son in one of his games, she can be found on the JSC fields in full referee garb (hastily donned amid the wasps in the equipment shed).
Although Jim Meinhold played in Jr. High School about a million years ago, he only re-entered the world of soccer as a volunteer coach for his daughter's U6 team in the Fall of 1996. Jim currently coaches her U8 team (oof - The Sparkling Dolphins ) in Wilton, CT. He holds an 'F' coaching license and will look to step up a notch this coming year. Jim volunteered for this project thinking that the perspective of a truly novice coach would be beneficial, if only to ensure the lingo used was understandable. (He adds that it only took him a week or so to figure out what LOTG stood for, but that he's still working on "SOTG"!) Jim loves just about anything to do with being outdoors - gardening, golfing, etc. He even enjoys mowing the lawn. As an avid birder (bird-watcher, twitcher, .... ), he sometimes finds himself gazing up to the heavens trying to identify a raptor flying over instead of paying attention to the U8 action on the field.
Gary Rue has been involved with the game as a youth coach and referee in Frankfort, KY since 1982. In 1983, he helped form and administered a new youth soccer league, and still continues as the league registrar and advisor to coaching and refereeing. In 1985, he helped start the soccer program at Western Hills H.S. as the assistant boys' coach, assuming the role of varsity head coach in 1992. During his days as an assistant, he also refereed high school and was a certified referee assessor during that time. Gary has coached U11, U12, U14 and U19 competitive teams since 1990. As this sport has gradually taken over his life, most of his previous extra-curricular activities, such as golf, tennis, basketball and poker are now only past life memories. He has 25 years plus in with the Commonwealth of Kentucky, managing a staff of ten database administrators. His wife teaches 6th grade and their 25 year old son is currently coaching Kentucky ODP teams, as well as an U11 girls' competitive and a boys' middle school teams. Gary says he's been there, done that and is still learning!
Ironically, it was the 1994 Major League Baseball strike that turned Ken W. Smith's family into soccer fanatics. Ken played baseball, not soccer, in his youth. His children grew up playing both baseball and soccer. During the 1994 baseball strike (which ruined their trip to Wrigley field), Ken was angry enough at baseball to look around for another sport in which to do volunteer work. He offered to be an assistant coach for a young traveling soccer team. When no one agreed to coach it, he ended up being the coach. Since he needed to learn the rules better, he attended a referee certification clinic with his 13 year old son. Once he became certified, he thought, "Well, I should ref a few games with my son ..." and the next thing he knew, both of them were addicted to refereeing! Two of Ken's children now play on select soccer teams in central Michigan and his third child, who is 3, dribbles the ball around their house yelling, "Goal!" and "Offside!". Ken's wife is Registrar for the Mt. Pleasant, MI traveling soccer league and tries to keep all this chaos organized.
Ken has an "E" coaching license and is a Grade 8 referee.
Dave Teetz was initiated into coaching when he was 'volunteered' to coach his stepdaughter's newly formed select team in the spring of 1995. Dave has an E license. He will also be involved with a new U8 boys team starting this indoor season. Dave by no means started from zero, however: he actively played select prior to his high school days (when he entered the pointy football sport). He also refereed recreational soccer while active as a select player. Currently, he plays indoor on a O30 coed team. Dave resides in Cincinnati, and coaches out of Fairfield (Fairfield Optimists Select Soccer Club).
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