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The Mysterious Life: Jack Doan

The Mysterious Life of the Squared Circle Officials

Hello and welcome back. Now, for all of you new to this article, where have you been? No matter, whether you did or didn’t read my first one, I’m writing this article simply because I’m very fascinated with referees. Last week, I told mostly everything that referees do. This time, though, I’ll tell you about how the E.M.T.s and other staff know when a wrestler is really injured or not. Here’s how they do it:

1) Remember last week, how I told you that the referees whisper to the wrestlers? Turns out, they also do it to see if the wrestler is hurt.

2) If the wrestler is really hurt or cannot continue, the referee will raise both of his hands above his head in an “X” shape.

3) After that, the backstage officials will communicate revised plans to end the match quickly.

Note: After the “X” sign is given, if the referee puts his hands straight up in the air, that means that the wrestler can still continue.

Although giving you information about referee jobs is fun, I’d rather be telling you about my next ref:


Jack Doan


From: Danville, Ill.

Height: 5’ 6.5”

Weight: 165 lbs

WWE Debut: 1992


Mention Jack Doan’s name to any real WWE fan and they’ll all say the same thing, “He’s the luckiest man in WWE.”

Wanna know why? That’s because for the past 14 years, Jack has officiated the vast majority of Raw’s divas matches. Ask him for an estimate, and he’ll say that he thinks the number is probably as high as 90%.

Did you know: During the 24/7 ruling of the WWE Hardcore Title, Doan attempted to beat Crash Holly in an impromptu match to win the belt. He went so far as to remove his referee’s shirt, and persuade fellow referee Jimmy Korderas to count the fall. However, his attempt was unsuccessful.

To many, the divas are just eye candy, but Jack is quick to point out otherwise.

“They really are phenomenal athletes that keep me on my toes,” he argues. He also doesn’t mind theorizing that perhaps he gets the women’s matches in order to ensure that all good-looking people are associated with the match. Keep dreaming my friend.

Did you know: Doan is one of five kids his dad raised on his own. His father worked in a factory for 39 years.

In addition to all those diva matches, Jack has been officiating during some of WWE’s most memorable moments. He was referee when Chris Benoit battled Kurt Angle at WrestleMania X-seven in Houston, and remembers just what passion and energy the competitors put into that match. Doan also recalls attempting to properly officiate the unorthodox Boiler Room Brawl between Mankind and Undertaker, which would go down in history as the night Paul Bearer turned on his longtime ally.

Doan also has paid the price for wearing the stripes among WWE’s massive entertainers. He can still feel the time Vader powerbombed him with such force that he coughed up blood for the next 24 hours. He was out of action selling his “injuries” until he returned at WrestleMania XII, in coincidentally, a Vader match. Then again, there’s also the infamous night when an enraged HHH took out everyone in the ring with a steel chair-EVERYONE.

Did you know: After the above incident, Doan required eight stitches to the head and suffered a concussion.

Doan first joined WWE back in October 1991 as a truck driver serving live events. From there, he took robes from wrestlers at ringside, played music at shows, worked on the ring crew and continued to drive from town to town. On one joyous day, WWE officials asked if Jack was interested in learning how to referee in case of emergency. Doan took advantage of that opportunity and started filling in almost instantly, getting help from the likes of Tim White and Mike Chioda along the way. For what must’ve seemed like years (really only two weeks), the need for an official thrusted him into the lights for the first time on Raw television. The rest, as they say, is history.

Did you know: Jack appeared in the February of 2007 edition of WWE Magazine along with Mike Chioda and Chad Patton. The interview is called ‘Come On, Ref!’, and Doan talks about being in a bathroom that was lit on fire, his Pay-Per-View chairs, and eating with an obsessed fan.

Jack certainly paid his dues along the way-especially when first starting out. He remembers many 300-mile drives and cites his father as the man who helped him most through the tough times. His father’s will and support has helped him immeasurably, Doan says.

Jack is happily married to his wife Shannon, whom he met during the same year he started working for WWE. The Doans have two daughters.

Did you know: Sadly, my last one, but definitely the best. Doan officiated the Playboy Evening Gown Match at WrestleMania XX and was rolled over by some divas.

Discuss it on the wrestling forum


  1. Comment #1

    Does'nt that Look some short :(
    maybe not up to the mark...

    Posted by Rayan on Monday, December 15, 2008

  2. Comment #2

    That is good, it must be hard to write about Referees, ha ha, good work mate

    Posted by Crazy Steve on Monday, December 15, 2008

  3. Comment #3


    Posted by ruizumbie on Monday, December 15, 2008

  4. Comment #4

    Hey guys:
    1) I applaud you for actually reading this, and
    2) Do you think I should get rid of the first part where I tell you things that the referee does?

    Posted by The author of this article on Tuesday, December 16, 2008

  5. Comment #5

    Once again, nice article. Short, but enjoyable.

    Posted by Wee-Man on Tuesday, December 16, 2008

  6. Comment #6

    Although it is a tad short, I can understand how much effort is required to revise the history of refs. WWE problem. Refs? Hard as.
    Great article mate.
    Keep up the good work.

    Posted by The Nemesis on Monday, December 15, 2008

  7. Comment #7

    Outside of some grammatical bungles toward the end, this was a damn good article, and hell no you shouldn't take out the initial tidbit information! Some of us haven't been watching for 30 odd years and don't know all the secrets to look for lol

    I have to admit, you're articles are fascinating and you've pretty much become my favorite one. Keep up the good work, man.

    Posted by Jove on Tuesday, December 16, 2008

  8. Comment #8

    Wow, two articles and a PPV preview (by the way, I suck at predictions) and I've already got a fan.

    Posted by Mysterio Kid on Wednesday, December 17, 2008

  9. Comment #9

    I don't know if it is a problem, that this article is a rather short one, I think it's more of a problem, that most of the articles round here are too long to stay interesting.

    What makes me wonder is the fact, that some parts of this are identic with the article on Jack Doan on Wikipedia, coincidence?

    Posted by Ginnungagab on Wednesday, December 17, 2008

  10. Comment #10

    Ginnungagab-I never knew that because Wikipedia is my LAST resource and I don't copy and paste.
    Just in case I ever create another "under the quota" report again, I would like to add yet another segment to my reports. If you have any questions about the WWE REFEREES only, please pm me.

    Posted by Mysterio Kid on Friday, December 19, 2008

  11. Comment #11

    Let me rephrase that last statement. If you have any questions about the WWE or TNA REFEREES only, please message me.

    Posted by Mysterio Kid on Saturday, December 20, 2008

  12. Comment #12

    Great article...sorry missed your first one...keep the first part on what refs do besides doing the 3-count...did you also know (if u didn't put it in the first article) that it is also the ref's job to keep the match "flowing?" Meaning if the crowd becomes bored (usually by yelling "BORING")the ref would tell the wrestlers to pick up the pace.

    Posted by Porke Rynz on Saturday, December 20, 2008

  13. Comment #13

    I don't think that my last comment will happen :(.
    Porke Rynz-1)What three count? and
    2) I never knew that about the "flowing."

    Posted by Mysterio Kid on Saturday, December 20, 2008

  14. Comment #14

    3-count...duh...I'll let you think about that...before I answer ya with a smart ass remark...hehehe

    Posted by Porke Rynz on Sunday, December 21, 2008

  15. Comment #15

    3-count as in like when the ref makes the three count to end the match?

    Posted by Mysterio Kid on Wednesday, December 24, 2008

  16. Comment #16

    Can I just say that all your "facts" about wrestling referees sending hidden signals is pure fantasy.
    I worked for the WWF/WWWF from 1978-1997 and nothing of the sort happened. Maybe you did, and still do, see referees lift their arms up etc. There are logical reasons for it such as maybe they are shaking.
    In all, I was responsible for referees' welfare for 20 years. NOTHING happened. Now that is the truth. From someone who was actually in wrestling.

    Posted by FormerWWFReferee on Tuesday, May 19, 2009

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