Florida ADs Endorse 40-Second Football Play Clock

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Palm Beach Post (Florida)


High school football could look a little different in Florida next season.

During a meeting Wednesday of the Florida High School Athletic Association's Athletic Director Advisory Committee, the group endorsed a handful of proposals that would affect the sport beginning this fall.

The first would add two more teams from each region to the state playoffs for Classes 1A-4A.

Last season -- the first under the FHSAA's revamped playoff system -- four teams per region qualified for the postseason based on points.

This year, six teams would qualify, with the top two seeds earning byes into the second round.

The changes are an effort to allow more teams to qualify for the playoffs, and give the No. 3 and No. 4 seeds the opportunity to play a home game, increasing revenue for their schools.

The FHSAA's Board of Directors will vote at a Jan. 29 meeting on whether to implement the change. If approved, the rule will take effect beginning this fall.

ADAC voted on a handful of other football-related proposals Wednesday:

1. To clearly define the FHSAA's procedures for postponed and interrupted games. These procedures are expected to be modified before August in order to be enforced in the 2018 season.

2. To increase points for a loss. Starting this fall, 35 points will be awarded for losing to a Category 1 team (previously 30). The five-point increase also applies for losses to Category 2 (30), 3 (25) and 4 (20) teams.

Category 1 teams are those that won 80 percent or more of their games; Category 2 teams won at least 60 percent of their games but no more than 79 percent; Category 3 teams won at least 40 percent of their games but no more than 59 percent; and Category 4 teams won less than 39 percent.

3. To approve a 40-second play clock pending approval by the National Federation of State High School Associations at the NFHS Football Rules Committee meeting next week in Indianapolis. Currently, a 25-second clock is used. It starts once the ball is marked. Under the new rule, the play clock would start as soon as the previous play is whistled dead.

jwagner@pbpost.com Twitter: @JRWagner5

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January 12, 2018


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