Ejections and the Collegiate Game

by:  John Van de Vaarst, National Clinician

In 2011 there were a total of 1531 ejection reports submitted to the appropriate officials for intercollegiate games.  This is an increase of 7% from the previous season.   Male players had a 7% increase while female players had a 13% increase.  On a positive note, male coaches had a 13% decrease.   The following is a breakdown by gender:

Male                                                                                                                              Female

Players  1130 = 74%                                                                                          Players 284 =  19%

Coaches  110 =   7%                                                                                          Coaches    7 = < 1%

A very serious issue is that fighting increased by 12%.  There were 102 fighting ejections in 2011.   This is the highest number since report tracking  began.  The indication is that the game is becoming more physical and officials need to focus their attention on game/people management in order to reduce the number of ejections in this area.  Skills must be developed or enhanced to increase game control so that players respect the decisions of the officials and do not attempt to take matters into their own hands with retaliation and fighting.

Another interesting statistic is that ejections for foul and abusive language increased by 4%.  This means either the language is becoming more a part of the everyday culture of players or officials are dealing with the problem on a more regular basis.  The hope is that the latter is the case.

The breakdown of ejections by periods is as follows:

First Half: 270

Second Half: 1137

Overtime: 98

Post Game: 7

Incomplete data: 19

It is easily concluded from the above that the second half of play is more difficult to manage and officials must be physically and mentally prepared for the entire game.  Further a team that had a player ejected did not win the game 88% of the time.  This clearly indicates that an ejection(s) have an impact on the outcome of the game.

On the much more positive side, the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) awarded 13 gold awards – no cautions or ejections for the entire season.  52 silver awards – one to five cautions or ejections and 19 bronze – 6 – 10 caution or ejections for the 2011 season.  This is a record number of  awards.

A detailed report by  category will be published in the next edition of the NISOA Newsletter.  Special thanks to Brain Crossman, NSCAA Ethics Chairperson, for collecting and completing the analysis on ejections.