Football Officiating > General Discussion

Ball Spotting and Measurement

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ElvisLives:
OK, for all you "I ain't never measurin' " folks out there, please respond.

Both teams have exhausted their times-out. Following a touchback on a kickoff, at the ready-for-play signal:

1/10, A-25, 1:20 (4), snap (40 and running), A=7, B=10. A11 gains 3 yards, and is down inbounds.

2/7, A-28, clock running (40 and running). A11 gains 3 yards, and is down, inbounds.

3/4, A-31, clock running (40 and running). A11 gains 3 yards and is down inbounds.

4/1, A-34, clock running (40 and running). A11 advances approximately 1 yard, is tackled, and falls to the ground with the ball in his right arm (his right arm being the first part of his body, other than his feet, to touch the ground), and the forward point of the ball is approximately 6 inches beyond the entire width of the A-35 yard line, clearly visible to all participants in the game. The Head Line Judge marks forward progress to A-35 plus approximately 6 inches, while the Line Judge signals for the clock to stop (0:38), for the first down for A.

1/10, A-35+6", ready (40 and running). A11 throws an incomplete forward pass.

2/10, A-35+6", snap (40 and running). A11 throws an incomplete forward pass.

3/10, A35+6", snap (40 and running). A11 throws an incomplete forward pass.

4/10, A-35+6", snap (40 and running). A11 advances approximately 10 yards, is tackled, near the pressbox sideline and falls to the ground inbounds with the ball in his left arm (his left arm being the first part of his body, other than his feet, to touch the ground), and the forward point of the ball is approximately 6 inches beyond the A-45, clearly visible to all participants in the game. The Line Judge marks forward progress to the A-45 plus approximately 6 inches, and signals for the clock to stop (0:08) for a first down for one team or the other.

Fill in the blank:
The Referee ____________________________________________________________________________________________________

Grant - AR:
I'm not in the "I'm never measuring" crowd.  I'm in the "don't measure unless absolutely necessary" crowd.  This situation falls into the latter category.  Measure and give the ball to the proper team.

oklahomaRef:
I have been the white hat on my crew for 7 years and I have never been one of the "never measure" guys, but I will give it a go anyway.

on the first scenario I am signalling first down, winding the play and the game clock as soon as the chains are set, if a coach wants an explanation I will signal an official's TO and explain that the series started on a line, the 25, and since the end of the run was spotted just past the line, the 35, and the point of the ball is clearly past that line there is no reason to measure. Chop the play clock for 25 and wind the game clock.

On the second scenario, since the line judge stopped the clock I have time to quickly get on the radio and ask both the H and the L if they see a first down and if not conclusive from discussion I will bring out the chains and measure.

There are some lines of thinking to always, if at all possible, start a series on a line, but I do not agree with that thinking and this is a good example of why. Since on the first scenario we didn't measure because the series started on a line and ended 6 inches past one it would have given a coach a reason to want a conversation (argue) if we had started the series on the 35 instead of just past where we marked the first down on the previous series.

AlUpstateNY:

--- Quote from: carol1995 on May 11, 2021, 03:27:54 PM ---I'm not in the "I'm never measuring" crowd.  I'm in the "don't measure unless absolutely necessary" crowd.  This situation falls into the latter category.  Measure and give the ball to the proper team.

--- End quote ---

Agree, "Common Sense" dictates.  If you are "SURE" one way or the other, That's it.  If there is ANY doubt, better to measure and be sure.  In a really critical situation, you might consider calling the Captain of the team your decision will not favor, to observe from your vantage point and get his concurrence, or convince him of why you reached your decision ( to deter any further disagreement from the sideline).

If a Head Coach, however, insists on debating your decision, NFHS 3-5-10-c allows for requesting an Official's TO, for clarification.  Explaining/confirming the absolute certainty of your judgment, at the sideline (Team area), eliminates any need for re-measurement, and should be completed as quickly as possible to avoid any unnecessary delay.

bossman72:
1st scenario, absolutely not.  Never ever measure after a touchback.  You start at the 25 (or 20 for NFHS), LTG is the front edge of the 35 (or 30).  There is a chance the sticks could be off by an inch or so if the HL is not anal about checking to see the sticks are set up correctly.  If the coach wants to complain, just say we started on the 25/20 for the touchback and need to get to the 35/30.  There's no need to measure.

2nd scenario you could (and should) definitely measure since you didn't start on a line.

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