CLOVIS (KSMX)- Coaches Drew Hatley, Jeff Gillespie, and Agustin Briseno were selected as officials for the New Mexico Activities Association (NMAA) State Basketball Championships this spring.
The three coaches were selected based on their achievements while officiating games, their integrity on and off the court, and recommendations from peers and superiors. All the coaches selected from across NM to officiate at the state level are highly involved in the sport, doing their absolute best to make competition fair and equal for both teams playing.
Of the more than 700 basketball officials in New Mexico, only 36 are selected to officiate the tournament. The requirements to be able to officiate are lengthy.
These include attending summer camps and clinics, officiating a minimum number of games per year, pass rule tests with an 85 percent or better, and be able to work under the stress of the state-level games. The coaches, however, do not do this for themselves, but rather for the students.
Jeff Gillespie finds it as “just another way of giving back,” and says “being around kids that want to be on the court makes officiating fun for me.” Agustin Briseno said he enjoys to “have the opportunity to call games with some of the best referees in the state.” For Coach Drew Hatley, “it is a humbling honor to be selected out of roughly 700 basketball officials.”