Connect with us

2020 XFL season

Officiating crews for the 2020 XFL season

The Alliance of American Football uses the 8-person mechanics of the NCAA and has 48 officials from Football Bowl Subdivision conferences on six crews.



Professional football continues under the banner of the XFL, which begins its inaugural season Feb. 8, just six days after Super Bowl LIV.

The XFL uses the 8-person mechanics of the NCAA and has 48 officials from Football Bowl Subdivision conferences on six crews. This differs from the NFL in that the umpire is lined up behind the linebackers and an eighth official, the center judge, is used. Each crew also has a replay official, all of whom have NFL replay experience, who will have sole discretion over replay reviews and may intervene in cases of egregious errors in the last five minutes of the game, or in the case of a player safety issue. A tenth official, who will serve as a ball spotter, will be assigned to each game. (This official does not have foul responsibilities.)

Dean Blandino is the head of XFL officiating, a position he had in the NFL from 2013-16. Steve Strimling, a Pac-12 referee, is the officiating coordinator, a position he had with the Alliance of American Football last year. In addition to Blandino and Strimling, the following will serve as game supervisors:

  • Larry Upson, Pac-12 position supervisor and former NFL official and supervisor
  • Wes Booker, a current SEC official
  • Chuck Bresnahan, a former member of the NFL and Alliance of American Football officiating department,
  • Jeff Bergman, current NFL line judge

Bergman will work as a rules and mechanics trainer as well. Bergman and the six replay officials are the only current NFL employees in the XFL officiating department. Update: A previous version of this post had Jerry Bergman listed as one of the XFL officiating supervisors, when in fact, we had the wrong Bergman brother.

Several of the officials have been scouted by the NFL under its Officiating Development Program, but the league had no formal role in the staffing process. Six women, five of whom have been in the ODP program, are on the field for the XFL. Nine current NFL officials officiated in the first version of the XFL in 2001.

One official formerly worked in the NFL, and left abruptly in 2015 for an undisclosed reason which was characterized only as not due to officiating performance. Another official worked for 2 seasons in the defunct United Football League.

Officials are listed by their position and uniform number, their current college conference, and seasons worked in an NFL development program. Former NFL players are indicated with their playing experience. Assignments for last season’s bowl games and conference championships are listed. The ODP seasons are listed (or the “Advanced Development Program” from 2013-14), which are the preseason programs except where noted: *assigned to a college invitational exhibition game only, †development program for former players, or worked in 🇪🇺NFL Europe or 🇨🇦CFL.

Officials who were in the 2019 AAF are designated with a Δ.

      Conference ODP experience Other notable
R 9 Tra Blake ACC 2019, 2020 (*U) Liberty BowlΔ
C 22 Larry Smith Big Ten 2016, 2020* Δ
U 50 Francisco Villar Pac-12   Pac-12 Championship, National ChampionshipΔ
D 8 James Wharrie Pac-12   National ChampionshipΔ
L 54 Quentin Givens Big 12 2015-17 Independence BowlΔ
F 67 Max Causey Conference USA 2018-19 C-USA ChampionshipΔ
S 62 LaShell Nelson Conference USA 2016-18, 2019 🇨🇦 Las Vegas Bowl
B 25 Grantis Bell SEC 2017*, 2018, 2019-20* Fiesta BowlΔ


      Conference ODP experience Other notable
R 19 James Carter SEC 2017-18, 2019* SEC ChampionshipΔ
C 31 Amanda Sauer-Cook Big Ten 2017 Δ
U 38 Mike Moten SEC 2015 Δ
D 79 Michael Dolce Big Ten 2007🇪🇺, 2017*, 2018-19 Sugar Bowl
L 44 Steven Matarante ACC    
F 5 Glen Fucik SEC 2018-19 Redbox BowlΔ
S 99 Clay Reynard Pac-12 2007🇪🇺, 2013-14, 2018-19 Pac-12 Championship, National ChampionshipΔ
B 26 Justin Nelson Pac-12 2016-2018, 2019* Citrus BowlΔ


      Conference ODP experience  
R 81 Brandon Cruse Big 12 2018-19, 2020 (*2nd umpire) Rose BowlΔ
C 51 Tab Slaughter Big 12 2016-18, 2020* Mountain West Championship, Rose BowlΔ
U 88 Mike Morton ACC 2014†, 2015-17, 2018* Holiday Bowl; NFL LB 1995-2001 (OAK, STLr, GB, IND)Δ
D 42 Tangela Mitchell SWAC    
L 59 Brett Bergman Big Ten   MAC ChampionshipΔ
F 3 Anthony Flemming Big 12 2017*, 2018-19, 2020* Mountain West Championship, Rose BowlΔ
S 76 Eric Hartman ACC   Δ
B 23 David Ross Pac-12   Gator BowlΔ


      Conference ODP experience  
R 84 Jeff Heaser ACC 2018-19 Δ
C 33 Chris Snead SEC 2014-15, 2016*, 2017, 2018* Quick Lane Bowl, UFL referee 2010-11Δ
U 49 Scott Campbell Big 12 2019* Independence BowlΔ
D 17 Cravonne Barrett Pac-12 2018-19 Gator BowlΔ
L 55 Robin DeLorenzo Big Ten 2017-19 MAC Championship (alternate), New Orleans BowlΔ
F 6 Lo Van Pham Big 12 2018-19, 2020* Belk BowlΔ
S 91 Frank Steratore Big Ten 2016-19, 2020* Big Ten ChampionshipΔ
B 58 Joe Johnston Pac-12 2017, 2018*, 2019, 2020* Pac-12 Championship, National Championship


      Conference ODP experience  
R 14 John O’Neill Big Ten   Δ
C 82 Ron Turner SEC   Fiesta BowlΔ
U 86 William Thomas ACC 2013-15†, 2018-19 American Athletic Conference Championship; NFL LB 1991-2001 (PHI, OAK)
D 47 Rod Ammari Pac-12   Δ
L 28 Tom Eaton SEC 2017-19 Δ
F 96 Sebrina Brunson SEC 2018  
S 72 Justin Larrew SEC 2013*, 2016-17, 2018* Δ
B 90 Tyree Walton Big 12   Δ


      Conference ODP experience  
R 2 Reggie Smith Big 12 2007🇪🇺, 2016, 2017* Orange BowlΔ
C 27 Adam Savoie ACC 2017-19, 2020 (*R) New Mexico Bowl (R)Δ
U 35 Brad Hudak Big Ten   Big Ten Championship
D 11 Dale Keller Pac-12   Pac-12 Championship, National ChampionshipΔ
L 21 Maia Chaka Conference USA 2014-17 Idaho Famous Potato BowlΔ
F 63 Daniel Gautreaux SEC 2016 Redbox BowlΔ
S 94 Maurice Pierre Conference USA 2018-19 Δ
B 29 Jimmy DeBell Conference USA 2007🇪🇺 NFL official 2009-14Δ

(Crews are subject to change, especially when there are scheduling obligations to their college conferences and officiating clinics.)

Ben Austro is the editor and founder of Football Zebras and the author of So You Think You Know Football?: The Armchair Ref's Guide to the Official Rules (on sale now)

Continue Reading