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HPU CRJ 3200 - Soccer vs Football

Describes how the differences between soccer and football mirror the differences between American and European trial systems
by

Scott Ingram

on 6 January 2014

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Transcript of HPU CRJ 3200 - Soccer vs Football

Courts and Trials
Soccer vs. Football

What does soccer and football have to do with courts and trials?
The things that we like as a culture reflect our values
Sports reflect cultural values; as do trial systems - both emerge from the same culture
The differences in soccer and football mirror the differences in European and American trial systems
Observing how our values appear in football helps us to better understand why we do things certain ways in our trial system
So...how do we see ourselves?
Pragmatic
No-nonsense
Against bureaucracy
Like things simple
Informal
Efficient
Does this sound like our court system?
Perhaps it explains why many people don't think our court system works well?
But.....we also love procedure!
We have procedures for everything!
Will compare soccer and football along three lines:
1) Complexity of rules
2) Degree of precision
3) Relationships of actors

Rules
Soccer - relatively simple
11 people per side -
10 field players
1 goal keeper
Cannot use your hands (which includes arms)
Advance the ball forward in order to put in in the other team's goal
Keep the ball within the boundaries
Most complicated: Offsides
-if your team has the ball and you are ahead of the ball, must have at least one defender between you and the goal keeper
Fouls: Can't take the ball by pushing or tripping
Football - extremely complex
-just to pass the ball:

Only certain players can go forward
Those that don't, can only block certain ways
Only allowed one pass
Person throwing must be behind the starting line
If the ball does not go forward, it is considered a fumble
If someone doesn't catch it within the field of play, the play is over
To catch it within the field of play, the person catching the ball must have both feet "in bounds" --- of course, one knee equals two feet!
The defensive player cannot touch the receiver after the first five yards
Receiver must have control of the ball before landing if he loses it when he hits the ground
Control means that he caught it and "made a football move"
This is not all...could talk about intentional grounding, roughing the passer, eligible receivers....
Officiating the rules
One referee
Two side officials
Number Two
Handles substitutions
Only the referee can call fouls, stop the play, enforce the rules, covers the whole field
Sideline officials watch for offsides but cannot call it; also determine who gets the ball when it goes out of bounds
Often the referee will let inconsequential fouls go unpenalized
9 officials; not counting those in the replay booth
Each has a different set of rules to enforce
Judged, promoted, prestige based on how many calls they get right
Each week, they are critiqued on their accuracy
Any one of them can stop a play for a violation of any rule
Rule Enforcement
What takes priority?
1) Strict enforcement?
2) Flow of the game?
Strong preference for not interrupting the flow of the game
Prefer to let the players play
No foul called if:
1) Side offended has an advantage
2) Insignificant to the run of play
Offsides is only offsides if the offside player is involved in the play
Penalty usually takes precedence over the play
Examples:
1) Offsides followed by fumble
2) Illegal contact on a receiver even though the ball was thrown elsewhere
Referee must follow the rules even if an absurd outcome results
Often have to meet as a group to determine what the right call is
Breaks up the flow of the game
Precision
How precise must rulings be?
Can we be totally accurate?
Places particular emphasis on technical precision:
* in making decisions based on complicated rules
* when measuring distances
Not as concerned with technical precision
-throw in the ball from roughly the same spot
-defenders of free kick roughly ten yards from the ball
A "60 minute" game runs for more than three hours
Stop the clock for almost everything...emphasis on "controlling the clock"
Complaints that games were taking too long...
solution: add a second clock
Second clock is a play clock...must begin the next play before the time expires
Soccer games last 1:45 minutes from the time the game started
45 minute halves with a running clock...know when the game will end
"The conviction that adjudicative perfection is desirable and attainable if only enough time and care are lavished on rulings remains strong in the United States."
Think about instant replay!
In football, if the coach thinks the official got it wrong, the coach can "appeal" to instant replay
Take time and disrupt the game in order to "get it right"
It even has its own standard of review...will only reverse the call if there is "incontrovertible evidence" that the call on the field was wrong
But...how often are the announcers' opinions different from the official....or how often do they say..."it will be close"
Relationship between coaches and players
Does not happen in soccer
coaching not permitted during the game
Once the game starts, the only decisions are who to sub and when...and only get three
In some places, coaches not ever permitted on the sidelines!
Coaches are much more involved during the game
Control every aspect of it
Make all of the strategic decisions
Call the plays
Everything is scripted...receiving routes must be run to precision
spontaneity and improvisation are the heart of the game
Well, this is great and all....we get to talk about soccer and football in class...but what does this have to do with anything?
American trials: rules are complex and MUST be strictly enforced
Failure to follow a minor rule or to even make a mistake about a rule could mean a whole new trial
Leads to debates about whether the jury should be allowed to hear evidence that they already heard
Day of trial has relatively little testimony received when compared to the European systems
Much time and effort expended to come up with the "right" ruling
More concerned about rules and rulings than the big picture....
...are we going to find the truth
Must precisely determine what is relevant, prejudicial and reasonable
Trying to do something with precision about which reasonable people will disagree
Is this relevant?
Is this overly prejudicial?
Is this reasonable?
Lawyers are the show!
Much more involved than in Europe
Have to be because of the complex procedures...must have specialized knowledge and skills to perform the function
Can affect the outcome of the case
Line between lawyer and witness is thin
Strong emphasis placed on witness preparation
Witness testimony is rehearsed to have maximum impact on the jury
But in Europe.....
Judges evaluate all relevant evidence
Few rules of exclusion
Will not interrupt the flow of testimony unless it is for important matter
More concerned about the smooth flow of testimony
Lawyers play a small role
Witnesses testify first in their own words; then questions may be asked
Pre-trial preparation is considered inappropriate
Remain in their seats through the course of the trial
"Play the advantage"
Of course, the failure to do so results in a penalty and even more time taken to march off the precise distance of the penalty!
The defendant has three prior convictions for drugs and is on trial for possessing drugs
For Wednesday: Read Pizzi, Chapter 10
=Role of the Jury
Full transcript