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How ref certification SHOULD work

It’s Canada Day up here in Canada City so don’t expect a lot of deep thoughts today … I’m already half in the bag. But there’s still some interesting articles out there today that I wanted to share, like this one from our pal Showdown Joe on Big John McCarthy’s ref certification program:

C.O.M.M.A.N.D. stands for Certification of Officials for Mixed Martial Arts National Development and is an intensive course encompassing what is required for an official to be more than ready to step into a cage and ring to officiate a sport that has more variables at play than one can possibly imagine.

Unfortunately for MMA enthusiasts, this course has yet to be deemed mandatory by all of the athletic commissions that regulate the sport and quite frankly, this is a crime.

The course is broken down into three areas and participants require a passing grade of 90 percent (at minimum in all three) to be certified. As it stands today, the course has a 75 percent failure rate, as participants simply do not make the grade to officiate or judge in MMA.

The article goes on to give a drool-worthy list of knowledge requirements and training parameters. Unfortunately for everyone, Big John is something of a pariah right now with many athletic commissions for daring to question the way the system currently works. And Dana White considers him an ‘enemy’ because he worked with Affliction. So you’ve basically got the most talented MMA ref in the business and one of the few people trying to fix the issue of bad refereeing stuck on the outside. Yay.

This link is via MMA Payout. They boil the issue down to a nice quotable notable: “what good are the rules and regulations that MMA has put into place – those designed to protect the health and integrity of the sport and its fighters – if the individuals enforcing them are incompetent or unqualified?”