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5 Referee Books you must read!

As a certified referee or someone that is considering taking up sports officiating there are many good books available online that cover a wide range of topics that fit in with sports refereeing. Several of these books can be very informative and offer specific techniques and tips to help you be a better referee or sports official. Whether you are looking for a sport specific type of book or one that was designed to cover more than one specific sport. The following is a list of top five referee and sports officials you must read before you set foot on a field!


For the Good of the Game: Modern Techniques and Practical Wisdom for Today’s Soccer Referee

This 352 page, paperback book is a must have resource for anyone who is currently or considering becoming a soccer official. It includes numerous diagrams and illustrations depicting recommended positions that will give you the best perspective in order to be able to make the most accurate calls. The co-authors Ed Bellion and Bob Evans are very knowledgeable on the game and convey this information in a way that is easy to follow and understand.


The Sports Rules Book – 3rd Edition

This sports officiating resource book contains all of rules governing 54 different sports from Alpine Skiing to football. The book contains a vast amount of historical information on each sport including; where it originated, unique terminology, equipment used, scoring system and the game specific rules and consequences if the rules are broken. The book is written by Human Kinetics in collaboration with Thomas Hanlon. Human Kinetics has written a number of well written sports related books I highly recommend checking out –HERE!


It’s Not All Black and White: An Inside Look at Football Through the Eyes of An Official

It’s Not All Black and White chronicles the career of one of most storied football officials in Texas history, Mike Liner. It follows his career from the beginning when he called games at the junior high level, all the way up to the height of his career in the Gator Bowl Game in 2006. After his officiating career ended, he went on to serve as a board member of the Texas Association of Sports Officials. He also has won numerous prestigious honors. Liner served two years on the board of directors of the Texas Association of Sports Officials and is a recipient of the Outstanding Football Official Award from the Texas Tech chapter of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame. This book serves as a great “how to” for achieving a long and succesful referee career.


The Worst Call Ever!: The Most Infamous Calls Ever Blown by Referees, Umpires, and Other Blind Officials 

This book is meant to be both entertaining and enlightening to those who are currently sports officials or are pursuing a path to become one.  The two writers examine some of the most outrageous calls ever blown by officials. These calls ultimately lead to outcome deciding decisions. The book covers a wide range of sports and the worst calls that have been recorded in these sports including over 50 of sports most controversial stories.The 255 page paperback book also comes in Kindle and hardcover formats.


Successful Sports Officiating-2nd Edition

A must have for all aspiring sports officials. It contains the expert knowledge from the leading officials in their sport. It is thorough and it includes up-to-date information from officials at all levels of sports. If you have any questions, you can be sure that the answers will be found inside the pages of this resource. The rules and mechanics are just the beginning, Successful Sports Officiating will help hone your skills like no other book can.


The books listed above are the best books I have found covering the topic of sports officiating and reffing, no matter what level you are currently at, if you aspire to be the best sports official you can be, you should own all of these referee books. Along with the Top 10 Referee Apps in your arsenal you are sure to be prepared for any game and any call!


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