Looking good in zebra stripes?

JIM BENDER, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 10:45 AM ET

Gee, after being nailed for all those pass interference infractions over the years, you would think the last thing that ex-CFLer Dave Donaldson would want is to become a whistle-blower himself.

Donaldson, who played defensive back for a number of CFL squads, including the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, is already well into his training in zebra stripes.

"I coached in high school for a while but my full focus is on the reffing in high school, midget, major and junior," Donaldson said. "In the winter, I am working on my football camp. In the summertime, I go ref and get yelled at by all the parents."

Donaldson is already a Level II football official and is working on becoming a Level III next year.

And yes, he would love to become a CFL official one day.

"If that happened, it would be wonderful," said the Winnipeg native, who turned 36 earlier this week. "I think they're looking for some young blood. But I've got to pay my dues and take all the necessary steps.

"But what better ref to have than one who has played the game and knows what it's all about?"

A number of older CFL officials either have or are expected to call it quits this winter. Jake Ireland, for example, announced his retirement during Grey Cup week.

While Donaldson is willing to be patient, he hopes that process does not take too long.

"Hopefully, they don't wait until I'm too much older," he said. "But I'm actually not too worried about that. Even if it did happen, I think I would still do the high school games like Ken Lazaruk and those guys still do."

For now, Donaldson will stick to learning the different responsibilities each official is responsible for handling during games.

"For me, it's just doing the right thing at my position," he said.

Although Donaldson has coached high school and is starting an annual football camp, he has no desire to coach at the CFL level.

"I have made a commitment to becoming a ref," he said. "I'd make a good coach but reffing is really what I want to do."


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