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The Hidden Officiating Crisis: How the NFL’s Problems Trickle Down to Youth Sports

Mistakes and minute scrutiny on the biggest stage, and the criticisms that follow from coaches, the media and fans, reverberate down to the lower levels. Spectators are further emboldened to go after already beleaguered refs in youth sports—driving many of them away. In Florida, says one administrator, “we’re running out of officials.” Is there any solution?