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MEMBER SPOTLIGHT


Jim Tunney


FAMILY: Wife Linda (executive director of the AT&T Pebble Beach Junior Golf Association), six children and 16 grandchildren EDUCATION: University of Southern California– Doctorate in Education (1975); Master’s Degree in


Education (1952) Bachelor’s Degree, Occidental College (1951) WEBSITE: www.jimtunney.com YEARS AS AN NFL REFEREE: 31 (1960-1991) GAMES WORKED: Playoff Games–10 Championship, 8 Divisional, 6 Pro Bowls. And the following classic games among others: • “The Ice Bowl”–Dallas at Green Bay (12/31/67) • “The Catch”–Dallas at San Francisco (1/10/82) • Super Bowl VI–1972 (Dallas vs. Miami) • Super Bowl XI–1977 (Oakland vs. Minnesota) • Super Bowl XII–1978 (Dallas vs. Denver)


I was a school principal and superintendent working as a ref on weekends for many years. I started offi ciating intramural games while I was in college and then worked high school and community college games eventually working my way to the Pac-8. The NFL added Dallas and Minnesota in the early ’60s and needed more refs. I started as a fi eld judge and became a crew chief in 1967. •••


The coach who is losing is the toughest to work for. They are tough to deal with. People like Vince Lombardi or Don Shula expected you to be at your best and on point every second. •••


When I fi rst started as a ref, there were a lot more running plays; now it’s more passing. The players are bigger, stronger and faster than ever before. The intensity of the game has changed.


•••


Instant replay is now 26-years old. Most offi cials don’t like it but I think it’s good for the game because I want to get the call right. I told my crew, “Let’s not let the call get to the guy in the booth. The call ought to be on the fi eld.” •••


All the cameras also make a difference—everyone is an offi cial. Replay raises your level of performance. •••


I never played golf until I retired in 1991. I was living in Pebble Beach and joined Monterey Peninsula Country Club. I love the challenge of you and the ball and the course. It’s like offi ciating—you have to make the call yourself. I like the personal responsibility of that. •••


I play by the Rules of Golf, but some of the rules have been explained to me as “that’s just the way it is.” I don’t like the divot rule (playing the ball as it lies in a divot), especially because you didn’t cause it. I accept the rules of the game but I don’t always think they are the best thing.


60 / NCGA.ORG / FALL 2011


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