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NFL announces advanced training program officials

20 officials get the chance to audition for the NFL

The NFL has announced its third class of officials in the Advanced Development Program (ADP). These candidates are successful college and Arena Football League officials. The group will work preseason games. Once preseason is over, those officials will return to officiate their college schedule.

The NFL officiating department will scout the ADP officials and consider whether they have a future full-time in the pros. If the officials pass muster, they will be candidates once a roster spot opens up. The ADP officials are not members of the NFL Referees Association (the officials’ union) and they will not be called up mid-season to replace injured officials.

Side judge Jonah Monroe (from the American Athletic Conference) was originally slated to be on the ADP roster for a second season, but was hired as a permanent official late in the process. He is replacing James Coleman, who is sidelined with an Achilles injury suffered during a conditioning minicamp.

The 2015 Advanced Development Program officials (followed by conference affiliation) are listed below, with an asterisk indicating officials who have previously been in the ADP.

  • Mike Carr (Big Ten)
  • Maia Chaka* (Conference USA)
  • Catherine “Cat” Conti (Mountain West)
  • Ryan Dickson* (Pac-12)
  • Alan Eck (Big 12)
  • Matt Edwards (Big Ten)
  • Marlow Fitzgerald (Mountain West)
  • Ramon George (Conference USA)
  • Quentin Givens (Big 12)
  • Lark Jones* (Conference USA)
  • Kevin Mar* (Big 12)
  • Mike Morton (Atlantic Coast)
  • Mike Moten (Conference USA)
  • Larry Neal* (Conference USA)
  • Lyndon Nixon* (Big 12)
  • Jerod Phillips (Big 12)
  • Mearl Robinson (Pac-12)
  • Brad Rogers (Southeastern)
  • Chris Snead* (Southeastern)
  • Steve Woods (Big Ten)

There are two women on the list. Chaka is in her second year in the ADP, and this is Cat Conti’s first year officiating NFL preseason games.

We don’t yet know the officials’ positions or jersey numbers, but in the past the officials wore between 136-155.

Once we have more information about the ADP officials we will pass it along to you.

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Mark Schultz
Mark Schultz is a high school football official, freelance writer and journalist. He first became interested in officiating when he was six years old, was watching a NFL game with his father and asked the fateful question, "Dad, what are those guys in the striped shirts doing?"

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5 thoughts on “NFL announces advanced training program officials

  1. Does it seem that Conference USA tends to put up more officials than any other conference for the NFL? At least it seems that way for the delvopment program.

  2. Alan Eck should never be considered for the NFL, unless of course you are into fixed games, phantom calls, and what can only be called partiality. Check his crews records of penalties in Texas games versus all other Big XII Schools. Shameful.

  3. Alan Eck is needs to spend less time in the gym and more time trying to learn his trade. In less than a year now his crew has determined the outcome in two games and called fraudulent penalties at critical points in the game. The he allowed one of his officials to bump into Charlie Strong on the sideline. He is a washed up division 2a QB turned bean counter and now making a fraud of college football. The NFL should do a better job of vetting their officials as the Big 12 clearly has not.

  4. How can Alan Eck be considered one of the best collegiate referees in the country? His officiating crew had a horrible game in Austin TX on Sept 26 for OK-State vs TExASS and followed that up with another horrible outing in Norman OK on Oct 3 for OU vs West Virginia.

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