NFHS Expands Technical Rule

By Staff

Coaching Management, 14.6, August 2006,

To improve the flow of the high school game, the NFHS strengthened the rules covering delay of game penalties. A fourth violation—leaving water on the court following a timeout—was added to the three existing scenarios: committing a plane violation during a throw-in, interfering with the ball after a field goal, and huddling between teammates just before a player takes a free throw.

In past years, a separate warning was issued for each violation, so coaches could conceivably receive three warnings before a technical foul was assessed. With the new rule, the first violation of any kind will lead to a warning, and the second to a technical.

“Delay of game isn’t a big problem for us, but this change cleaned up the rule,” says Mary Struckhoff, Assistant Director of the NFHS. “Previously, a team could purposely commit delays to their advantage without penalty. Coaches were getting lengthened timeouts and more opportunities to coach their kids while the floor was being cleaned up.

“My advice for coaches would be to keep the water off the floor if possible,” she continues, “or designate a team manager to be responsible for wiping it up.”

For more information about NFHS rules changes and points of emphasis, go to and click on “Sports & Information Rules.”