One Remarkable Referee

Graduate student Will Adams makes the grade nationally at the collegiate flag football championships in Florida

Will Adams (front and center) listens intently during the officials clinic held before the playing of the games at the NIRSA National Flag Football Tournament in Pensacola, Fla., earlier this month.

ALBANY, N.Y. (January 14, 2016) — One of the improvements to the UAlbany intramurals program over the past year has been the enhanced level of officiating — and no one embodies this more than first-year School of Education grad student Will Adams.

The Spotsylvania, Vir., native was chosen as one of 60 collegian flag football officials in the country to take part in the 76-team NIRSA National Flag Football Tournament, held in Pensacola, Fla., from January 2-4.

Will called the experience unique and unforgettable. “I was able to work with the best officials in the country and officiate in highly competitive games,” Will said. “I also received invaluable evaluations and advice from the professional staff on the officials committee that worked the tournament.”

He began officiating as an undergraduate at George Mason University and “fell in love with it.” The UAlbany Campus Recreation program, led by director Sam Axley, associate director Craig Brewer and assistant director Marissa Allen, is enormously pleased he brought both the officiating and mentoring talents he acquired down south to UAlbany.

“Marissa and Will took on the assignment of improving the skill set of our student officials this past year,” said Axley. “They worked diligently and made wonderful strides.”

Axley is equally effusive about Will’s in-game talents. “He was the number-one-rated official at the NIRSA regional championships held at Springfield College tournament in November. Will exemplifies to the rest of the officiating staff that you can accomplish great things with hard work and dedication. His being chosen for the NIRSA national championship was a huge step for the Intramural Sports program.”

Will expressed gratitude to Campus Recreation for allowing him to make the trip to Florida and be a part of the NIRSA event. “Marissa, Sam and Craig gave me support and encouragement throughout the entire process,” he said.

His professional path may lead to higher education — his concentration within the Department of Education Administration and Policy Studies. But that may end up as just one of his professions.

“I plan to continue working in officiating,” Will said. “I already work high school football and I would like to one day to be officiating at the Division 1 level, and possibly the NFL.”

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