Play Clock Moving To 40-Seconds In Arkansas High School Football

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Changes have been coming every season to improve football across all levels and now changes are coming to the high school level in Arkansas.

Starting in 2019, the high school football play clock will change from 25 seconds to 40 seconds. The move is in the same direction as higher levels have made in the past where it no longer requires the play to be started by the officiating crew, rather the play clock would start as soon as the previous play ended.

“The entire committee needs to be commended for its thorough discussion regarding the move to a 40-second play clock, except in specific situations that will still have a 25-second play clock to show play is ready to begin,” said Todd Tharp, assistant director of the Iowa High School Athletic Association and chair of the NFHS Football Rules Committee. “This is one of the most substantial game administration rules changes to be approved in the past 10 years, and without detailed experimentation from several state associations over the past three years, along with cooperation of the NFHS Football Game Officials Manual Committee, all the elements needed to approve this proposal would not have been in place.”

The change is one of seven rules revisions recommended by the NFHS rules committee. One other significant chance would be the use of instant replay in postseason play. It has not been announced that Arkansas will take part in that rule for 2019 as of yet.

A complete listing of the football rules changes will be available on the NFHS website at

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