Author Topic: Play clock  (Read 1141 times)

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Offline ElvisLives

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Play clock
« on: October 10, 2019, 01:56:37 PM »
Varsity Contests:
Following touchdowns, I have a feeling that some play clock operators are being told to wait until a variety of points in time have been reached before starting the 40-second play clock, such as "when the ball is spotted," or, "When the kicking team has their players in position, or, even worse, set it to 25 and wait for the R to chop it in.  On long TD plays, one PCO told me that he had been told to wait until the R reached the 30 before starting it.

Gosh, I hope that isn't really what is happening.  Not for my sake.  For the sake of the teams.  When they get into playoffs, they are gonna have to conform to the rule - at least I hope so.  Playoff crews have got to be following the rules and proper procedures.  So, when teams that may not be used to hustling to get their special teams in place run up against possible DOG or inability to get their defensive field goal teams into position, they are gonna have some hardship.

Yeah, yeah.  I know.  We don't want any DOGs.  If we are late getting the ball spotted and officials in position, we simply pump it up.  But we must be giving the consistent message to PCOs - see a signal, take a breath and pause, then start the clock.  Every time.  If we need to pump it up, we will.  But the teams have the responsibility to get their personnel on the field.

Robert

Offline TexDoc

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #1 on: October 10, 2019, 02:13:10 PM »
I have noticed coaches are getting their players out their faster after kickoffs.  It used to be a real battle to get them out there because the coaches wanted to huddle up that offense and coach them up.  Not so much any longer, but that 40 second clock needs to get started.

Offline centexsports

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #2 on: October 10, 2019, 03:26:08 PM »
You do realize that the average age of officials is above 50 and at the R position most likely several years above that.   On a long run or pass and run, the R needs to be following the play and watching all the big boys trailing the play.   By having the PC started a few seconds later allows for a more fluid transition and does not require a pump.   Otherwise, you just have the U standing over the ball and the same amount of time passes.

Rules have variations based of situation and intent (holding as an example).   I think some mechanics need that same small degree of flexibility. 

Offline Clear Lake ref

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2019, 01:57:05 AM »
Rule of thumb most Rs I have worked with is start it when they “confirm” the TD. 

Offline ElvisLives

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #4 on: October 12, 2019, 01:59:41 PM »
Rule of thumb most Rs I have worked with is start it when they “confirm” the TD.

Who are “they”?

For Texas HS football, all but twelve games each year are officiated solely by the 5 or 7 officials on the field.  So, for all of these games, confirmation of the score is their TD signal.

Is that what you are talking about?

Offline Clear Lake ref

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #5 on: October 13, 2019, 07:13:09 AM »
Yes.

Offline ElvisLives

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #6 on: October 13, 2019, 11:32:41 AM »
Yes.

Don't mean to sound abrasive, but that's not a "rule of thumb," that is the rule.  And, if everyone were doing that, there would be no issue.  Unfortunately, there are officials out there that are a) either too lazy to hustle to their positions for the succeeding spot, or b) they are afraid of annoying a coach (at the risk of getting scratched) if his team gets a delay penalty.
Well, for a), we have the ability to 'pump' the play clock to 25, if we can't get the ball spotted and the crew in position before the 40-second clock gets under 25. Easy.  Not a big deal at all.
For b), the teams simply have to get used to the rule, and get their special teams on the field on time.  The practice of huddling to talk about what they want to do on the Try simply has to go away.  Let 'em know the play clock is running and they get 'er done.

We just need consistency.

Robert

Offline Magician

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #7 on: October 13, 2019, 12:27:59 PM »
Don't mean to sound abrasive, but that's not a "rule of thumb," that is the rule.  And, if everyone were doing that, there would be no issue.  Unfortunately, there are officials out there that are a) either too lazy to hustle to their positions for the succeeding spot, or b) they are afraid of annoying a coach (at the risk of getting scratched) if his team gets a delay penalty.
Well, for a), we have the ability to 'pump' the play clock to 25, if we can't get the ball spotted and the crew in position before the 40-second clock gets under 25. Easy.  Not a big deal at all.
For b), the teams simply have to get used to the rule, and get their special teams on the field on time.  The practice of huddling to talk about what they want to do on the Try simply has to go away.  Let 'em know the play clock is running and they get 'er done.

We just need consistency.

Robert


I'm OK if the crew communicates to the play clock operator to delay this one a few seconds after the score. This is a silly rule that was done in an attempt to speed up the FBS games that sometimes go 3:30 to 4:00. Saving 10-15 seconds after each TD isn't going to have a huge impact in the overall game time. They are long for 2 reasons: TV timeouts and replay. Our D3 games have the same number of scores, same number of incomplete passes, same number of time outs. Our average game time is 2:40-2:50. The only difference...TV timeouts and replay.

I do like the 40 in this instance though because it does get the teams moving a little quicker. But if we give them a few extra seconds consistently to avoid a DOG I don't think that's a major issue. If we are doing it because the officials are lazy and can't get into position quick enough that's not acceptable. This should be no different than another play for us.

Offline JasonTX

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #8 on: October 13, 2019, 08:08:15 PM »
We had a crew report that the defense was still huddled up after the kickoff returned ended.  The offense was ready to go at 30 on the playclock but defense was not.  They were prepared to penalize the defense for delay if they didn't get on the field, but they were holding up the snap waiting for a few seconds.  How long would you guys wait until you just went ahead and flagged them? 

Offline Magician

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #9 on: October 13, 2019, 10:57:35 PM »
We had a crew report that the defense was still huddled up after the kickoff returned ended.  The offense was ready to go at 30 on the playclock but defense was not.  They were prepared to penalize the defense for delay if they didn't get on the field, but they were holding up the snap waiting for a few seconds.  How long would you guys wait until you just went ahead and flagged them? 

I would be more likely to reset the play clock and wait until the defense was out there than I would flag the defense for DOG. If it became a common issue after multiple warnings I would have no issues flagging them for a DOG. We had a coach tell us he ended up with a DOG on offense because they held up the snap waiting for the defense and there were only 10 seconds left when the U stepped away. They had called some pre-snap motion and didn't get the ball snapped in time. That's not right.

Offline FWREF

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #10 on: October 30, 2019, 01:50:21 PM »
We flagged a team two weeks ago for DOG on defense. They insisted on huddling after the KO and we warned the entire first half. After second half KO, they huddled up, offense came out and were ready to snap so we flagged def. The def coach ran on to the field yelling that they weren't ready and we couldn't call that. After the DOG (and the UNS on the coach for running on the field) they managed to be ready for the rest of the game. Left me thinking that i should have flagged them after the first warning. 

Offline Clear Lake ref

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #11 on: November 04, 2019, 03:44:02 PM »
You could have skipped the flag and let offense run a play

Offline Joe Stack

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #12 on: November 04, 2019, 04:09:11 PM »
DO NOT let them run a play without the defense on the field. You'll get many more problems that way.

The biggest issue with holding up an offensive snap is letting the offense know it the foul will be on the defense. So both the U and the R need to communicate on the field and the L/H to the coaches on the sideline. Get on your radios if you have them.

Offline Clear Lake ref

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #13 on: November 05, 2019, 06:42:07 AM »
I was being humorous.

Online Official_21

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #14 on: November 05, 2019, 07:12:27 AM »
Do all clock operators always go have a pre-game with the R and other applicable officials, like we are supposed to? I know I do, more important as a PCO to have a pre game, but I still go have a chat as a GCO as well.

I like to go have a pre-game chat with the R and other applicable officials. It gives me a chance to know how that particular crew chief likes to run the game on the day & what to expect (Another official getting into position before starting the play clock for example). Also, I realize that no two crew chiefs will run their games exactly the same way, which is another reason, in my honest opinion, that all clock operators go have a pre game chat.

It's another one of the good habits I have gotten into as a first year clock operator.

Offline TexDoc

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #15 on: November 06, 2019, 08:00:09 AM »
Do all clock operators always go have a pre-game with the R and other applicable officials, like we are supposed to? I know I do, more important as a PCO to have a pre game, but I still go have a chat as a GCO as well.

I like to go have a pre-game chat with the R and other applicable officials. It gives me a chance to know how that particular crew chief likes to run the game on the day & what to expect (Another official getting into position before starting the play clock for example). Also, I realize that no two crew chiefs will run their games exactly the same way, which is another reason, in my honest opinion, that all clock operators go have a pre game chat.

It's another one of the good habits I have gotten into as a first year clock operator.

Last Friday, our play clock operator was so bad that we sent a message to the press box, via the coaches, that we needed them both to come see us at half time.  They did not check in before the game.  When I asked them if anyone ever told them they must check in with the officials before the game, they said no one has ever told them that.  I think it was more any issue of them not paying attention because the second half was much better.  They had several questions about why we were doing certain signals, like our counting signal and 4th down fumble signal.  They said they had never seen that before.  I'm still trying to figure out what planet they ran the clock on before. 

Offline centexsports

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #16 on: November 06, 2019, 08:14:32 AM »
I had a coach come up to me before the game Friday.  He saw us adjusting the pylons behind the end zone.   He asked why they were placed off of the back line.   I explained that they were primarily a remnant of the grass playing field.   They are not for back line in or out of the end zone calls.  They are there so if the left or right hash marks are no longer visible, it allows the the umpire to still be able to place the ball correctly.   I guess that if you get snow they are probably still a factor on turf fields.   

Anyway, he told me he had been asking officials for several years about them and I was the first one that ever had an answer.

Offline JasonTX

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #17 on: November 06, 2019, 11:54:39 AM »
...a remnant of the grass playing field.   

You mean they used to play on grass?   ;D

Offline Joe Stack

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #18 on: November 08, 2019, 03:31:08 PM »
We had to take some time in a pregame to adjust the pylons in a game earlier this year. The grass field was so poorly marked and even what was supposedly marked as hashes  weren't really correct. I told both coaches we'd do the best we could.

Fortunately my umpire was bald or he would have pulled his hair out.

Offline ElvisLives

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #19 on: November 08, 2019, 04:47:06 PM »
I had a coach come up to me before the game Friday.  He saw us adjusting the pylons behind the end zone.   He asked why they were placed off of the back line.   I explained that they were primarily a remnant of the grass playing field.   They are not for back line in or out of the end zone calls.  They are there so if the left or right hash marks are no longer visible, it allows the the umpire to still be able to place the ball correctly.   I guess that if you get snow they are probably still a factor on turf fields.   

Anyway, he told me he had been asking officials for several years about them and I was the first one that ever had an answer.

That doesn't actually address why the pylons are not on the end line.  Initially, they were.  But, after a number of incidences where an airborne receiver contacted an end line pylon before securing a pass, which resulted in an illegal touching foul (because he was, then, out of bounds and ineligible), they decided to move the pylons 3' off the end line, to pretty well eliminate any such recurrence.  And it has.
But, as you state, the end line pylons exist to aid in locating the hash marks on poorly marked fields.  The advent of artificial surfaces has all but eliminated the need for the end line pylons.

Offline JasonTX

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Re: Play clock
« Reply #20 on: November 16, 2019, 07:13:04 PM »
I spoke with a clock operator before our game on Friday and he reported that he was told to wait 5 seconds to start the play clock following kickoff returns and scores.  I told him that was not correct and to start it when we give the appropriate signal and that if we needed to reset it we would.  He did a fine job.

Another crew reported that their clock operator was never told about the 40 second clock following a kickoff by their home chapter.  If true, that is disturbing that they were not using a 40 after a kickoff all year long and other crews never noticed it.  Luckily this particular crew took care of it in pregame and it was ran correctly.