Tucsonan Jim Fogltance retires after storied college football referee career

Jim Fogltance (right) with his son BJ (Fogltance photo)

Tucsonan Jim Fogltance, an Amphitheater High School graduate and former administrator in the Amphitheater School District, has retired from officiating after a career that dates to 1965.

Fogltance’s son BJ, a college football referee from Tucson, announced his father’s retirement on social media following Saturday’s game at Los Angeles between BYU and USC.

Jim Fogltance, 79, has served as a crew chief for Pac-12 replay officiating in recent years since joining that operation in 2005.

He began his career in 1965 refereeing local high school football games four years after graduating from Amphi. He holds a master’s degree in Education from Arizona.

A Class of 2015 Arizona Football Officials Association Hall of Fame inductee, Jim also officiated United States Football League games in 1985 and 1986 and worked postseason college football games including the Fiesta Bowl, Rose Bowl, Aloha Bowl, Citrus Bowl, Copper Bowl and the Independence Bowl.

He worked the epic Stanford-Cal game in 1982 that ended with the Golden Bears’ multiple laterals resulting in a touchdown with no time left and Stanford’s band on the field.

He was also part of the crew when ASU played Michigan in the 1987 Rose Bowl.

Jim’s background includes refereeing high school basketball. He was selected to work playoffs for 25 out of 30 years. He has worked the championship game at each level, including three times at the 4A level and two times at the 5A level.

He also refereed junior college basketball from 1983-89 and has coached Little League baseball.

He joined the Pac-10 officiating crew in 1978 while he worked as an elementary-school educator in Tucson. He later became a principal and the Amphi School District’s human resources director.

Jim joined legendary Marana athlete Cleo Robinson in the Pac-12 replay booth after both ended their lengthy careers on the field.

Cleo is the grandfather of Salpointe great Bijan Robinson, who is now in his second season as a running back at Texas. Cleo continues to be a Pac-12 replay official, and he referees local high school boys and girls basketball games.


ALLSPORTSTUCSON.com publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner. He is a former Arizona Daily Star beat reporter for the Arizona basketball team, including when the Wildcats won the 1996-97 NCAA title. He has also written articles for CollegeAD.com, Bleacher Report, Lindy’s Sports, TucsonCitizen.com, The Arizona Republic, Sporting News and Baseball America, among many other publications. He has also authored the book “The Highest Form of Living”, which is available at Amazon. He became an educator five years ago and is presently a special education teacher at Gallego Fine Arts Intermediate in the Sunnyside Unified School District


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