All GHSA Football Games must be played to completion, so be familiar with the Overtime Procedure.
GHSA OVERTIME PROCEDURE
1. There will be a 3-minute intermission between the end of regulation play and the coin toss to start the overtime procedure.
2. The captains will meet for the coin toss, and the winner may choose one of the following:
(a) Be on offense first
(b) Be on defense first
(c) Choose the end of the field on which to play
3. The ball is placed on the 15-yard line and the offense keeps the ball until:
(a) The ball is turned over on downs (NOTE: The team on offense can gain a first down.)
(b) The defense gains possession of the ball (ball is dead immediately)
(c) The offense scores a touchdown or field goal
(d) The offense misses a field goal
4. After the first offensive team completes its possession, the opposing team gets its opportunity from the 15-yard line.
5. If the game remains tied after each team has had an offensive possession, there will be a 2-minute intermission and the team that lost the first coin toss has the first option for the second possession.
6. For each additional overtime period (i.e., an offensive possession by each team) the original coin toss options are alternated.
7. Beginning with the third overtime period, a team must attempt a 2-point try after a touchdown.
8. Each team is allowed one timeout per overtime period. No timeouts may be carried over from regulation play.
9. Penalty enforcement is handled the same way in overtime as in regulation play.
Proper Procedures for Weather Delays
At some point during the high school football season, many parts of the country have to address weather issues. Some of these, according to NFHS guidelines, dictate a suspension/ delay during a game. Most of the time, the delay is due to lightning and thunder (either lightning seen or thunder heard); and when a suspension or delay occurs, the teams are sent to a safe, sheltered area until the weather situation has ended. NFHS guidelines on handling lightning and thunder delays require use of the 30-minute rule, meaning when the game has been suspended, play cannot resume until at least 30 minutes have elapsed following the last sighting of lightning or the sound of thunder. Once the game is suspended, each further instance of lightning or thunder requires a reset of the clock and the commencement of a new 30-minute interval. Seldom is there a problem with game officials or site administrators following the basic 30-minute rule when there is lightning or thunder. However, some game officials and administrators are not abiding by the mandatory halftime intermission and warm-up rule when there is a lightning delay near the end of the first half. If there is such a delay late in the second period, once the second period is completed, NFHS playing rules require a halftime intermission of at least 10 minutes followed by the required 3-minute warm-up period before the third period may begin. Coaches or game officials cannot shorten the halftime intermission or the warm-up period. However, both coaches could agree to shorten (end) the second period during the delay, and then the third period could start after the delay as soon as the mandatory warm-up period is completed. It is important for game officials, coaches and administrators to be aware of the halftime intermission and warm-up rules on nights when the weather could present delays and to administer those NFHS football rules correctly.