SPORTS ADDICT: High School hoops game needs to adopt a shot clock

by dentonramsey

SPORTS ADDICT: High School hoops game needs to adopt a shot clock


By Denton Ramsey / Sports Editor


In the NBA, a player has 24 seconds to get a shot off.

In NCAA Basketball, a player has 35 seconds.

But in high school hoops, there is no shot clock.

And in my opinion, it makes no sense.

People attend basketball games at all levels to watch the game being played, not to watch a few players dribble around the court and play keep-away from the other team.

But sometimes we see the latter, and it’s time for that to change.

I know that not all coaches would be willing or want to add a shot clock to the game.

However, I feel it is needed.

If these kids want to play in college or beyond, they need to learn to get a shot off in a reasonable amount of time.

Personally, I believe 40 seconds would be plenty of time to shoot a basket for the high school level.

Sometimes, though, I can see the logic in wanting to hold onto the ball with a lead – especially if a team has solid guards that can handle the ball for long periods of time without turning it over.

“I am not against a shot clock since they use one in college,” South Grand Prairie varsity boys’ basketball head coach Scott Parlin told me recently via e-mail. “But personally, we have very solid guards this year, and love to run time off the clock when we have a lead.”

In that instance, I can understand.

But many times, you’ll see an undermanned team trying desperately to hold onto a lead – and many times, those teams turn the ball over due to poor passing and ball control.

So I guess it normally works out in the long run, shot clock or no shot clock, at least at the high school level.

However, it would still make perfect sense to me if high school basketball adopted a shot clock.

The game of basketball can still be about using solid guards to hold onto the ball with a lead – just not holding onto it for two plus minutes.

I have no problem with a team “holding on” for a victory – you see it at the NCAA level and you see it in the NBA.

My problem is when teams decide a 9-5 halftime lead is good enough and hold the ball the entire second quarter.

Granted, it’s rarely seen to the point of being that bad.

But I have seen some pretty sad moments when it comes to “holding the ball” through my years of covering high school basketball.

The point is plain and simple, though: a shot clock would only improve the game of high school hoops.

It would make the game more fun and enjoyable to watch.

And it would also force high school kids to understand that basketball is about much more than just keep-away.


Sports Editor Denton Ramsey can be reached via e-mail at