Verle Sorgen was a star at Riverside Poly High School, earning 9 varsity letters in basketball, track, and baseball. He was All-CIF in basketball and baseball and won the CIF broad jump title for three years in a row.
Verle was a sport standout in track, basketball and baseball at USC. He was a 1953 All- American in track and was named USC’s Most Outstanding Graduate in his senior year. In total, Verle earned 8 varsity letters at USC and is one of only two Trojan men to earn letters in three of the four major varsity sports in the same season.
Following two seasons of minor league baseball and two more serving in the United States Air Force, Sorgen began officiating in 1957. He originally officiated football, baseball, softball, volleyball, track and professional tennis. In an on-field football officiating career that spanned more than 30 years, he worked games on the Pop Warner, high school, junior college and university levels, establishing himself as one of the finest on the West Coast. Verle refereed three East-West Shrine Games, two Mirage Bowls in Japan and the 1985 Rose Bowl. He also officiated in the United States Football League for two years, working in seven playoff games, including the league’s championship game both years. In 1986, Sorgen assumed the role as Pac-10 coordinator of football officials, a job he held for 21 years. Verle has left his indelible mark on four professional sports leagues, six NCAA sports, as Pac-10 Conference Football Officials Coordinator and as an NCAA Football Rules Subcommittee member.