Photo: Courtesy of Greg Cann

Get in the game!

become an official today!

The Denver Football Officials Association is recruiting new officials!  Don’t just watch the game, get in the game.  Being a high school football official is a very rewarding experience.  As an official you will get to:

  • Earn extra income for working part-time, set your own schedule.
  • Get a mileage reimbursement for traveling to games.
  • Be part of Friday night lights and the excitement of HS football.  
  • Keep physically fit and enjoy your time outdoors.
  • Challenge yourself by learning the rules and mechanics.
  • Make life long friends with fellow officials and be part of the “zebra” community.
  • Interact with some amazing student athletes and coaches.

What is it like being an official and part of “Friday Night Lights”?  Well, it’s a different experience for everyone… High school football is an exciting atmosphere and “addicting” from your first time on the field.  Our sister association at IEFOA in the Pacific Northwest put together an excellent 7 minute video to show you what Friday night football is all about.  While this video was not done in Colorado, the experience is VERY similar.  This a GREAT video and gives you a glimpse into the world of HS football officiating.

"The most beneficial aspects of the DFOA class were the thorough discussion of the rules and interacting with prominent members of the association.  I also enjoyed the last day of the course when we got out on the field, learned some of the mechanics and put them into practice during some simulated plays. Overall, I felt well-prepared to step out onto the field for a real game...the other officials have been very supportive and helpful throughout my first season."
Jon Armstrong
2018 New Official

In 2019, we held the course from late June through early July at Englewood HS.  Dates vary slightly from year to year but it’s generally the same time of year.  We will post class dates when available.

Cost for the New Officials Course is $110.00.  That fee covers the cost of the rule book, case book, mechanics manual, NFHS Redding study guide and first year of CFOA membership dues ($90) with the Colorado High School Activities Association (CHSAA).  

The course is eight, two hour sessions over four weeks.  We meet on Monday and Wednesday evenings (summer dates TBD) from 6pm-8pm.  Of the eight sessions, 7 were classroom sessions covering rules, mechanics, and game scenarios.  The final class was instruction on the field to learn the mechanics of officiating high school football in Colorado.

These classes were taught by more than a dozen veteran DFOA officials… many that have worked state championship games throughout the state. In addition we had several guest speakers from the DI and DII college level.

New material is covered every night so attendance at each class is strongly encouraged.  If you need to miss a class, you are responsible for covering the material missed.

Yes. These classes will prepare you to take the NFHS exam to become a certified official.  Once the test is passed, you will be eligible to work sub-varsity games.  There are plenty of sub-varsity games during the season, you have the opportunity to work as much as you want.  These games are typically scheduled on Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.  These games are all ‘self-assigned’ so you can select games that meet your schedule and location preferences.

You will need to purchase your uniform and supplies.  A local uniform supplier will visit the new official class to make sure you have everything you need. Required items include shirts (long and short sleeve), pants, hat, shorts, shoes, bags, flags & whistles are needed in order to officiate.  Uniforms are unisex and do not differ from male to female officials.  In 2018, the starter package was priced at $130.00.  This package will get you the equipment you need to start working games at the high school level.  Register for class by 5/1/19 and get a discount on your uniform supplies.

During the 2018 season, a few of the rookie officials that went through the New Officials Course were selected to work their first varsity games.  This is an exception and not a rule… hard work can be rewarded.  Generally speaking, varsity assignments are not made for new officials until their third year.  However, there is a shortage of officials and those that show promise and put in the work can move up quickly.

Yes, you will also be assigned to a crew within the DFOA. This allows you to study and learn from your crew mates.  You will be mentored by a group of veterans from your crew.  This is also the opportunity to gain many life long friends as well.

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