Parents that get crazy at youth sporting events should be imprisoned! These stories show how bonkers these people can really get. Get your popcorn ready!
(Content edited for clarity.)
A Classy Mother
“I was about 16 at the time umpiring under 12 baseball. One of the kids came up, hit the ball and threw the bat. I called him out and warned him next time that happened he would be thrown out of the game. There were loud screams and expletives from mother bear. I warned her team’s coach to keep the crowd under control. Sure enough, her child comes up again and hits a ground ball and launches the bat, nearly taking out a coach. I call him out and eject him from the game. The kid starts crying and then the screams from mother bear tear out from the crowd. She runs up behind the home plate fence and starts belittling me. Many expletives and screams later and my blank face staring into her soul unflinching, I say, ‘Ma’am, when you’re done screaming, you can follow your son and drive him home as you’re ejected from the field.’
These words only seem to enrage her as her screaming does not stop. I say, ‘If you do not leave I will be forced to call the police.’ Unphased, she continues to scream and shout, so I call the police, and they remove her in handcuffs. It never ceases to amaze me how the parents of these children can act like animals, the shame was visible on her son’s face.”
Championships Are Serious Business
“When I was 16, I was umpiring the championship game of the baseball league for 9 and 10-year-olds in my city with a friend of mine. The team in the field is up by 1 in the last inning and there are 2 outs with the bases loaded. Parents are SCREAMING in excitement.
The batter smacks a line drive that falls in front of the right fielder, the runner on 3rd scored easily and the runner that was on 2nd is trying to score as well. The throw from the right fielder is way off but there’s one problem – the 2nd kid never touched home plate. He stepped right over it. So while the team that thinks they just won is celebrating, the catcher picks the ball up and tags the runner who missed home plate. I called him out. The parents went crazy, cursing at me at the top of their lungs in front of their kids and even going as low as throwing stuff at me. It was pretty terrible.
Turns out one of the parents was recording the game and between innings, he showed me what he had recorded. I was right, the kid was never even close to touching the plate. He showed the video to the rest of the parents and a few of the people slipped me some extra money after the game for treating me so poorly. However, one parent did confront me in the parking lot and tried to fight me until he was dragged away by his wife.”
All Fun Until The Cops Arrive
“When I first started officiating football, I worked a youth league for a couple years. I had a couple of incidents with parents which led me to no longer work youth leagues.
The first was in a 7 and 8-year-olds’ game. About the middle of the second quarter, there is a big hit made for a legal tackle. One of the home team moms, who was helping with the chains, comes unglued. Apparently, her son was the ball carrier who just got (legally) blown up. She starts yelling and cussing at me that I have to protect her kid and that she’s paying for me to be there. I tell her that it was a legal tackle and that if something illegal happens, I will throw a flag. I also tell her that as a member of the chain crew, she needs to remain quiet and impartial. She starts yelling again saying that she’ll say whatever she wants to say to whoever she wants to say it and if I don’t like it, I can leave. She then starts yelling and cussing at the kid who made the tackle that he better watch out and not hurt her little boy.
So we now have a grown woman yelling and cussing, in front of everybody, at an 8-year-old kid for making a legal play. At this point, I’ve had enough and tell her that we no longer need her assistance on the chain crew and with one more word, she’d be taken away from the field by the police. She apparently didn’t believe me and started cussing at me again about how I didn’t have any power and called me a ‘fake ref’ (whatever that means). So I called over the officer assigned who then ushered her away from the field and she was banned from attending games the rest of the season. I really felt bad for the kid, though. This kid is 8 years old just trying to have fun playing football and has to watch his mom lose her mind in public and get toted off by the police. I can’t imagine having to try to finish the game or go to school the next morning and that’s all your friends are talking about.
The second was the last youth game I ever worked. It was championship day and there were 4 games being played back to back, one for each age group. I had the 11 and 12-year-olds, which was the last game of the night. As we’re getting ready for the coin toss, we hear a loud BANG. We look over and people are ducking for cover and crowds of people are running every direction. All of a sudden, multiple police officers are jumping out of their cars and one fires his taser and takes down a man near the gate to the field.
Apparently, he and a dad from the other team got into an argument over the 9 and 10-year-old game that had just ended. This argument devolved and led the man to pull out a weapon. Luckily he fired it in the air to try to intimidate the other guy and didn’t actually shoot him. Again, it’s the kid I feel sorry for. He’s 10 years old and just got done playing in a championship game. He’s probably wanting to either celebrate the win with his parents or needs his parents to console him about the loss, but now he has to see his dad tased and cuffed for drawing and firing a weapon.
Youth sports are great. It’s the adults who ruin them.”
One Irate Dude!
“My spouse was coaching a youth soccer game (girls, aged 10) and the ref was about 15. He called a foul and a dad from the other team ran onto the field and began chasing the ref. The dad had an umbrella that he was swinging wildly and threatening him with.
My spouse, the assistant coach, and the team’s parents formed a wall and yelled at the ref to get behind them.
The kid was shaking, and in shock kept repeating he needed to get his corner flags. No, kid. The game is over. Go to your car, go home. We’ll get your flags for you.
The daughter of the dude was just standing on the field crying.”
Everyone Is Glad When This Loser Is Kicked Out
“I referee hockey and I was refereeing a game in a tournament when this happened.
To make this easier, I will call the 2 teams white team and black team.
As a referee, I must call penalties when players break the rules. Well, early on in this game, I was calling a penalty on the black team. After I had assessed the penalty to the player, the white team’s coach started to yell at me that the other team’s player should be ejected from the game because he was trying to injure white team’s players. I calmly told the coach that it did not look intentional to me and that the kids are only 6-7 years old and not playing at the competitive level. The white team’s coach was furious and started to yell swear words at me and I assessed him a penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct.
After that, the white team’s coach was calm for most of the remainder of the game up until 3 minutes left. One of the white team’s players tripped and slid into the boards hard and hurt himself and the coach thought I should throw out another one of the black team’s players. Once again, I skated over to him and informed him that there was no penalty and that the white team’s player just tripped. This would turn out to be the last straw for this particular coach. He opened up the door and stepped out onto the ice so that we were face to face, and he started to yell at me that I wasn’t doing my job properly and that his players were getting seriously hurt. I instructed him to get back on the bench and he refused. He then grabbed me by the collar and I forcibly removed his hand and promptly ejected him from the game. Then he refused to leave and I told him that the game would not continue until he left. The other parents (coaches) then forced him to leave.
Did everything work out right? Well, no. Things got even more out of hand at this point.
After another stoppage of play, I noticed that the white team’s coach still had not left the arena and that he was, in fact, on the black team’s bench yelling at their coach. As soon as I noticed this, I made haste towards the black team’s bench and told the white team’s coach that he has to leave the arena. This sentence would turn out to be the proverbial poop hitting the fan. The coach started swearing (in front of 6 and 7-year-olds) and telling me to get a real job and to cut my hair (I’m a male with shoulder-length hair) because I looked like a woman working a low wage job. Despite this man’s abhorrent comments, I kept composure and asked him to leave or I would have the tournament security bring police to usher him out. As soon as those words left my mouth, he wanted to fight. He was taunting me into fighting him by saying things along the lines of: ‘You think you’re so tough, why don’t we settle this with our fists right now?’
Needless to say, I did not engage in a good old fisticuff. Instead, I waited because security was on their way. They arrived and forcibly removed this guy from the arena and the security guards were met with a loud standing ovation from both teams spectators in the stands.
In the end, the coach was suspended from the tournament and the league governing body revoked his coaching license because this was not his first incident with abuse of an official.”
A Father Defends His Son
“I was about 14, reffing a basketball game, under 11-years-old. This one dude was just a loser, always screaming at his own son (who wasn’t that good, but his dad seemed to believe he was a prodigy) while on time out, just disgusting to watch. Anyway, lucky for me, my dad was there watching me ref that weekend tournamen. The dude rushed me when I called a foul on his son, he shoved me from behind to the ground, then gave me one kick to the stomach. My dad came out, popped him with a 1,2 and dude was knocked out. Luckily for the guy, I was able to calm my old man down saying the kick didn’t even hurt, or he probably would have killed him.”
The Prejudice Eventually Comes Out
“This was U-17 Soccer.
So long story short, I was a pretty well-known player playing on a pretty prestigious traveling soccer club. I had a reputation for diving (drawing fouls) and we had played this team before. So the game goes super tight, it’s 1-1 and the game is nearing its end. Me being me decided to go dirty and try and cheat and the ref falls for it, so this ~ 20-year-old Asian kid was refereeing us and he blew a pretty big call. In his defense, he was 20 yards away and to him it probably looked like there was contact and something may have happened.
The kid was on a yellow card (which is like a warning), and he got another getting him a red card (ejection). The kid’s parents blew up. The dad rushed on the field yelled a bunch of expletives at me and then ran to the referee and started mocking him. He called him blind, insulted him in very prejudice fashion, telling him to open his eyes up with his hands and mocking his Asian eyes by stretching his eyes with his fingers. He shouts a bunch of expletives at the ref, continues mocking the ref saying that if his eyes were open he could’ve seen that I dived. This guy took this game way too seriously. The referee kept trying to tell the guy to get off the field and the dad got even angrier. He went right up to the referee and shoved him pretty hard. The kid who just got ejected was trying to drag off his dad and ease the situation. Kid’s older sibling, opposing coach, and the kid had to physically pull the dad off the referee and the field, all while he continued shouting expletives.
Poor kid, I could tell he knew something like this would happen and was just cringing at his dad’s behavior full of embarrassment.”
It Gets As Bad As Death Threats
“I received a death threat.
About 15 years ago I was a recreational and competitive soccer referee for boys and girls leagues with kids ranging from 6-12 years old. I had to take away a goal that was scored by a player who was offsides. This was a competitive team of 12-year-old girls.
A father came out onto the field and screamed in my face. I told the coaches I would call the game if they didn’t get him out of my face. He went to the sideline and I started the game back up.
About 10 minutes later, I made eye contact with the father and he dragged his index finger across his throat, signaling that he intended to slit my throat. I immediately blew my whistle, stopping the game and called the coaches out onto the field. I told them what happened and said that I would be calling the game if the father didn’t leave the field. The father threw a fit but finally left and we resumed playing. In retrospect, I should have called the game and gotten out of there.”
Kicking Everyone Out Is The Only Solution
“I used to be a youth hockey referee. I had a game once with a team that was known to be very dirty and has parents that were out of control. It was squirt level which meant there was no checking allowed, and this team was going all over the place and hitting everyone in sight.
After calling 3 very obvious penalties, the parents started going nuts at us referees. Swearing, leaning over the glass to scream at us, and finally, one parent threw something on the ice. I was relatively new and was getting nervous about what to do, but my fellow ref calmly skated over to their fan section, pointed from one spot to another in the stands and said, ‘Everyone sitting from here, to here, you’re out’ and then proceeded to kick about 1/4 of the fans out of the arena. It was pretty great to behold.”
It’s Clearly More For The Crazy Parents Than Their Poor Kids
“The first and only travel game I did for baseball. I can’t give a worst single meltdown because they were everywhere, so I’ll describe the situation:
1) The kids were only playing because their parents threatened them into playing.
2) Many parents were getting hammered.
3) I made a close call at the end that ended the game, and many parents were yelling at me, the older umpire there, and some even went as far as telling their kids to go up and tell me that I sucked (keep in mind they’re yelling over a call I made from a few inches away while they were about half a baseball field away).
4) Got people yelling at me as I was in the parking lot about to leave.
5) I was only about 13/14.”
A Coach Doesn’t Know The Rules
“It was my first time actually reffing and I was in my final game at a tournament. I was a linesman for a U10 championship soccer game, and I remember two distinct things happening.
About 5 minutes into a game, a kid gets tripped and the head ref calls it. The parent of the kid who got tripped screams, ‘Hey, ref! If my kid gets hurt, I’m coming after you.’ Ref understandably sends the parent packing.
It’s about 10 minutes before the end of the first half. The ref calls a penalty kick and the black team goes up to take it. The kid shanks it wide right, but the ref calls it back as one of the red team’s player came off the line before the player kicked it, so the black team got to take it again. The coach of the red team starts going off on the ref. ‘WHY DID YOU CALL IT BACK!? HOW ARE MY KIDS SUPPOSED TO KNOW THAT RULE?’ (Well, idiot, you’re the coach, so you should’ve coached them.) The ref tells him if he doesn’t stop screaming at him, he’s going to kick him off the field. The coach doesn’t stop, so the ref kicks the coach off the field. Meanwhile, black team takes the redo and makes it this time.
The game starts back up, and we see the coach and the parent that got kicked off the field started coming back towards us (they have to be 100 yards away once kicked off), the ref calls the game in the first half of the championship game and the red team goes freaking nuts. Parents start coming for us refs. It literally terrified me and the other linesman considering we didn’t do anything. I had to be walked to my car by security.”
So Threatened He Has To Hide In His Car
“I referee youth soccer in Canada as a late teenager. I mainly do 14-year-olds to 17-year-olds and have 2 stories.
1) I had only two very new assistant referees, both were about 12-years-old helping for an under-16s match (I was 18 at the time). I botch a call. I should have given a kid a red card but only gave a yellow. This makes a coach furious, but when a goal was scored off the penatly, all craziness breaks loose. Kid 1 shoves kid 2 to the ground and kid 2’s teammate, kid 3, tackles kid 1 in retaliation. I red card number 2 and 3 and kid 1 then proceeds to scream at my assistant for some reason. I yellow card him – his second – and off he goes. So now a coach has had 2 of his kids sent off and thinks it should be 9 v. 9 when it is 10 v 9. At the half, he storms up to me and hurls abuse, calling me an incompetent joke and saying I misread the situation. I am by no means trigger happy so I tell him to leave the field and coach. He then turns to my assistants and asks why they were not involved and begins to belittle them.
I happily tossed that coach the instant he began to insult my two assistant 12-year-old kids, bringing one to tears. He refuses to leave for nearly a full minute so I begin to pack up when his kids drag him away.
2nd time – only one assistant (again young) for an under 17s match. It’s the middle of December and about minus 2 out and lightly snowing. I was following the rules but made a call some parent didn’t like as they scream at me and begin to belittle my assistant. Fortunately, a good samaritan coach tells them to leave the kid alone (but they still yell at me).
Fast forward to late second half. The same situation happens but to the other team yet they know the rule and use it to their advantage. The freaking sideline acts like a bunch of rabid monkeys and rips into me calling me tons of bad names. The kid promptly scores and made it a tie game. Stuff intensifies. 2 minutes later, the most recent scoring team gets a yellow card and a parent hops the fence and begins to walk towards me, screaming. At that point, I eject him and threaten the coach with abandoning the game if he doesn’t calm his parents down. After the final whistle, I had to hurry to change out of a bright yellow shirt and hide in my car and lock the door. I am a pretty strong willed ref but I nearly cried in the car after that. I’ve never been so frightened as an official.”
Both Sides Are Screaming Mad
“My second ever game umpiring ‘A’ division (7 and 8-year-olds) went very well. One coach says before the game, ‘These kids are 7 and 8, this isn’t the World Series.’ Another thing he added was'”If there is a 3-1 count, I want you to call the next pitch a strike on my team no matter what. My kids need to start swinging.’
So I’m thinking to myself I have rational coaches this game. However, I was wrong.
It’s the 1st inning and I’m obeying the rule given to me. I call a strike that was off by about a foot (since there was a 3-1 count). The coach snickered and remarked, ‘Really Ump? That’s a strike? You’ve got to be kidding me.’ I didn’t call it again, and he didn’t say anything.
In the 2nd Inning, after a close play at first base, I make a tough but correct call saying the runner was out. Apparently, I don’t yell it loud enough, as one of the assistant coaches starts yelling at me. ‘WHATS THE CALL, BLUE?’ I reply, ‘Coach, I already made the ca…’
‘IF YOU DONT MAKE THE CALL I WILL MAKE IT FOR YOU!’ ‘
Coach, I told you. The runner is ou…’
‘FINE. I’LL MAKE THE CALL. THE KID IS OUT.’
In the 5th inning, the head coach of the other team starts yelling at me for calling a strike on a pitch that was clearly a strike. He then comes up and argues with me for about the longest 2 minutes of my life in between innings. Telling me, ‘How dare I do that.’ and ‘That was awful.’ He then proceeds to stand behind me to help the catcher out. I didn’t hear another word from him about my ball and strike calls.
At the end of the game, the coaches got so heated that my dad and some of my teammates (I had practice afterward) had to come to make sure I got off of the field okay.”
Things Can Get Very Scary Out There
“I’m an experienced youth soccer referee. I was doing a girl’s U17 State Cup game with two prestigious travel teams. The game was 2-0 and the team that was winning was not expected to win. At halftime, the two assistant referees (both in high school) commented that they didn’t like games where nothing exciting was happening because they were playing clean.
The second half was perfect again with no issues at all. The losing team takes advantage of a mistake by the winning team and makes the score 2-1. Then I announce that there are two minutes left and suddenly, there was a challenge in the box – 50/50 on a penalty call which I determine was just a corner kick. I can now hear the stadium go crazy and parents arguing both ways. After the corner kick, I stop the game as two parents start fighting each other. From the field, I demand that the parent that was clearly enraged leave with no luck. I go over to the coach to tell him to help me get the parent to leave and he yells at me ‘it’s your fault!’ I blow the whistle and abandon the game and a parent go ballistic. The parents of the upset team restrain him and the two high school assistant refs ask if there is a back way out of the stadium. NO. We were ushered out of the stadium by two parents of the other team to the parking lot. I checked my rearview mirror a few times on the way home.”