Whistle blowers wanted in Eagle County | VailDaily.com

Whistle blowers wanted in Eagle County

Local firefighter and Eagle town council member Mike Kerst (third from left), and county attorney, Bryan Treu (white hat), share a few laughs before this year's 1A state championship football game in Wray. The season is over, but the hunt for new officials continues. Anyone interested in joining the officials' ranks for next season should call Kerst at (970) 977-1007, or email mikelkerst@yahoo.com.

EAGLE COUNTY, Colorado – A local football officiating crew called this year’s 1A state title game, and they’re looking for some new referees to start next fall.

“You don’t really need to know that much about football. You just have to like kids,” said Bryan Treu, the white hat in the accompanying picture.

Treu is Eagle County’s attorney. Mike “Pappy” Kerst is a local firefighter and serves on the Eagle Town Board. Jeff Shroll Gypsum’s town manager.

They’re also football officials and they’re looking for some folks to join their ranks.

“We need a few new ones every year, and this year is no exception,” said Kerst.

They’ll run some clinics this spring and summer to get you up to speed. You’ll be fine. They’ll put you with a crew with lots of experience. Treu and Shroll have been calling football games for two decades, Kerst for three.

You have to know what a football is, and you need a clear understanding of sportsmanship. A little common sense helps, too. Everything else they’ll teach you, Kerst says.

“We mentor each new official for as long as they need it,” Kerst says. “We want them to be successful.”

Crews usually average 20 years experience, Kerst says.

There’s a quiz, but you’ll pass. Everyone takes a 100-question quiz. It’s good to study. In fact, it’s down right necessary. But everyone takes it together and everyone almost always passes.

That championship game Kerst and Treu worked was great, even if you weren’t playing or officiating. Burlington won 13-7, stopping Wray with 40 seconds left in the game and within two years of the end zone and its own state title.

A Burlington defensive lineman broke through and almost decapitated the Wray quarterback, causing a fumble that Burlington recovered.

“It was a great game, and a huge crowd,” Treu said. “I think most of the Eastern Plains was there.”

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