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  High School Sports are Back on

The 2018 season has arrived! Here's why it is so important to read the rule book before you go to the game.

By: Gary Jones
Published: 8/20/2018 7:26:25 PM

I love watching high school sports. I did a lot of it in my 32 year career at New Plymouth High. It's approaching fall again, and soon the gyms and fields will be filled with fans.  Many of these fans will be very vocal at the games shouting encouragement to the players, instructions to the coach and criticism or praise to the refs and umps.

There's the old saying that buying your ticket gives one the right to boo  anyone you want.  I'm not here to discuss whether or not this is correct, but I do have just one word of advice to fans who scream at officials:  please read the rule book. 

Here's why I say this.  Many times at a basketball game, I have seen the ball hit the top of the backboard followed by a loud bellow from the stands, "IT HIT THE TOP OF THE BACKBOARD, IT'S OUT!!" Had this person ever checked out the rule book, they would know the ball is still in play. 

Remember when the over and back rule became all three points (both feet and the ball) had to be in the front court before you could be called for going back?  The crowds yelled wrong interpretations of that rule for years, but I think people are finally getting used to this one now.

I was even guilty of it years ago when the Pilgrims were playing in the state football title game at Holt arena.  The other team had a rugby style punter who would run sideways before punting.  The lineman were going downfield right away and I was screaming at the officials to throw a flag.  Ooops!  Totally legal to do that if the punter takes off running.  "Oh, I didn't know that." Ever say that before?

So enjoy this new high school season, but let's control our rude behavior and cheer our guts out positively.  Speaking of which, I'd also like to thank all of you who read and enjoyed my sportsmanship blog last year.  The positive responses I received meant a lot to me.  

And now it's time for to begin another high school season, giving all of you access to watch many different sports absolutely free of charge.  So put on your school colors, log on to your computer, and like the Beach Boys sang, "Be true to your school like you would to your girl or guy."  I'll start it out for you all:  GO PILGRIMS!!! 

P.S.  And before you scream at that official, think about the rule you're yelling about.  Did you read that rule book yet??

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