When one is new (or even not new), the "old" utilities can be a pain. They were very strictly implemented. And not necessarily with the "same rules". Many people (everyone i work with) have working samples and simply clone them as needed or have tools that genereate the jcl and control statements - if they are even going to use the old utilities.
Fortunately, other than IDCAMS, developers do not have to use these very often. Unfortunately, you are struggling with IDCAMS
Good luck and plan on some frustration until this becomes more familiar.