Articles By: Joe Kleinsasser

Resolution: Make memories for a lifetime

As we turn the calendar from 2019 to 2020, it’s common to wonder where the time went. The older I get, the more I realize time is fleeting. Was it really that long ago that I played junior high and high school basketball, or I was playing baseball and soccer in college? The short answer is yes, but I still […]

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Games are better when coaches, players, fans and officials stay in their lane

As a former high school and college basketball official, I found that the best games were those in which the players played, the coaches coached, and the officials officiated. You could add that it helped when fans supported their teams instead of trying to coach and officiate. It sounds so simple, but all too often, it isn’t. All too often, […]

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Adam and Eve syndrome is as old as the beginning of time

The basketball season hasn’t come a minute too soon for fans of Kansas University. All the talk about possible sanctions, however, is like a cloud looming on the horizon. It isn’t every day that a blue-blood school like Kansas might be penalized by the NCAA. As Jerry Tarkanian once famously said, “The NCAA is so mad at Kentucky it will […]

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Football teams playing for pay goes back more than 100 years

Maybe I’m too easily amused, but I’ve always found it interesting how much universities pay other teams to come to “their house” to play a football game. If you are naïve enough to think that college football isn’t a big business at the NCAA Div. I level, I can’t help you. KU football paid its first two opponents more than […]

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When is it time to call it quits?

Athletes, coaches, and refs enjoy what they do — at least most of the time. Athletes and coaches are competitive by nature, and officials enjoy being around the game and the challenge that it involves. But there comes a time when it’s time to move on. Everyone eventually says, “Enough!” When I officiated basketball, I didn’t want to have fans, […]

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Want cheap entertainment? Follow @Big12Refs on Twitter

Even if you aren’t a social media fanatic, you might find this column about Twitter amusing. Twitter is the social networking site that launched in 2006. It is one of the most popular social media platforms available today, with 100 million daily active users and 500 million tweets sent daily. You don’t have to actually send a tweet to enjoy […]

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How do you respond when life throws you a curve?

If you’ve handled your emotions perfectly throughout life, stop reading. Actually, if you think that’s the case, you’re in denial. You definitely should continue reading. If you can admit to being human and you’ve said or done something you later regretted, join the crowd. Granted, the problem of keeping emotions under control isn’t identical for everyone, but that doesn’t mean […]

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Off-the-field issues present challenges for athletes, coaches and their teams

High school, college, and professional teams take an inconsistent approach in dealing with athletes who have off-the-field and off-the-court struggles. That isn’t surprising, considering the complexity of some situations that arise. Domestic violence and related incidents rank among the NFL’s biggest off-the-field problems. The only crime category with a larger number of arrests involving NFL players is DUI. Still, the […]

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Caution: You’re entering the replay zone

With football season rapidly approaching, it’s time to revisit the role of replay. We can debate to what extent replay should be used in football, but there’s little doubt it’s here to stay. Let’s start with the premise that the goal of replay is getting the proper call made on the field in a reasonable amount of time. In the […]

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Talent plus youth equals big payday

We know that Major League Baseball players make a boatload of money, right? Consider that at least 10 players are making $100 million or more because they can hit, pitch, or field a baseball. In the five months since free agency began last year, teams committed to around $4 billion in future salaries to players. Mike Trout is getting upward […]

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