Today I was refereeing a recreational game. There was a throw-in where the thrower essentiall spiked the ball hard just inside the field of play (it bounce 20 feet up).
There was no player near by, however, I called an incorrect throw. Of course the Coaches complained.
The basis for my call was the guidance in the USSF “Advice to Referees on the Laws of the Game”, section 15.3. However, at half-time, I looked again at the Rules of the Game booklet. It is silent on the spiking of the ball. With no mention in the Laws Booklet, I am inclined to not make such a call in the future.
Please Clarify whether spiking is really ever grounds for ‘improper throw-in’, and if so, why and under what circumstances.
USSF answer (June 10, 2008):
While the act spiking the ball is not mentioned in the Laws of the Game, it is traditionally forbidden because putting the ball in that manner is disrespectful of the Game and of the opponents. It attracts attention to the player and brings the game into disrepute.