USQ is delighted to announce that Alex Scheer has won the Referee of the Year Award.
USQ is delighted to announce that Alex Scheer has won the Referee of the Year Award. Scheer was selected as Referee of the Month in November after he received perfect scores on his referee evaluations and excellent reviews from Tournament Directors at the Midwest and Northeast Regional Championships.
The winner of Referee of the Year Award was determined based on the number of officiated games in the head referee and assistant referee positions; feedback from coaches, peer referees, and event directors; and additional contributions to the sport as a referee ambassador.
As Referee of the Year, Scheer received a plaque and a travel stipend for USQ World Cup 8; because, however, he will be playing for Blue Mountain Quidditch Club in addition to refereeing at World Cup, he will not be able to accept the $1,000 stipend. The stipend will go to Referee of the Year runner-up Michael Clark Polner, who has accepted this award.
Scheer started playing quidditch three years ago when he founded Toledo Quidditch, which is perhaps best known for playing in the first-ever televised quidditch match against Bowling Green State University. He currently lives in Toledo, Ohio where he plays for Blue Mountain Quidditch Club. Scheer has refereed games both in the Northeast and in the Midwest, which he says has helped him learn more about the game.
“To be the first referee to win Referee of the Year is very significant for me and my growth as a referee,” Scheer said. “I am beyond honored and humbled, and words cannot even describe how overjoyed I am to be the inaugural recipient. It solidifies in my mind what I have been doing all year: reffing the highest quality matches I possibly can.”
After Scheer became a certified referee in Oct. 2013 at the Dumbledore Memorial Tournament by Chris Beesley and David Brownman, he sought out advice from other referees such as Samy Mousa and Beesley. Beesley encouraged Scheer to attend the 2014 Global Games where he officiated the championship match, which is one of Scheer’s favorite quidditch matches as a referee.
“I have three favorite games I've reffed,” said Scheer. “The Global Games championship game between the USA and Australia because that was an exciting thing to be a part of and really helped boost my confidence as a ref for the season. My second favorite game was Ohio State [Quidditch] vs. Bowling Green for the  Midwest Regional Championship because I'm friends with a lot of players on both teams, and overall it was a good, clean match but the kind of match that you want to see excitement and a lot of action in. The third match would have to be [New York University Nundu] vs. Tufts [University Tufflepuffs] for the  Northeast Regional Championship… Those three games are the three that will always stick out in my mind as my three fondest.”
Scheer offered this advice to new referees:
“The biggest thing that helped me [become a better referee] was surrounding myself with good assistant referees,” Scheer said. “If you can get a team of people who know the rules around you, it makes your job as the head ref a lot easier. Studying the Rulebook is also very important. If you don't know a rule for certain, don't be afraid to find out. There are loads of people who are willing to help you, and if they see that you're putting in the effort to truly understand, they are going to help.”
Scheer also noted that it is important to own up to mistakes, to be confident, and have fun on the job. He also recommended talking to other head and assistant referees after a match to get feedback and to ask for advice.
Scheer is grateful to everyone who helped him reach this milestone.
“I'm very thankful for Chris Beesley who certified me two years ago, Samy Mousa who has dealt with all of my questions and helped me to grow as a ref, and Eric Schnier who certified me this year,” Scheer said. “This would not have been possible without them.”
Favorite color: Navy blue.
Favorite sport outside of quidditch: Football, specifically the Michigan Wolverines and the Toledo Rockets for my college teams, and the New England Patriots for my professional team. I'm also very partial to baseball, with the Cincinnati Reds.
Favorite pro-athlete: Tom Brady. That man never gives up, and he is driven to succeed. I have a lot of respect and admiration for him and former Cincinnati pitcher Bronson Arroyo, because he was in a band; I appreciate famous athletes who are also musicians.
Favorite quidditch moment: As crazy as this sounds, the televised quidditch matches we did with Bowling Green. It was a historical moment, and it was really wonderful being a part of history.
If you had to pick two teams to play against each other at World Cup, which teams would you pick? I want to see a Texas State University San Marcos vs. Ohio State Quidditch rematch. That game was amazing last year, and I think it would be really cool to see that again. Also, I really want to see Miami University vs. University of Miami, and with them being in the same flight it could totally happen.