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Old Sat Aug 16, 2008, 10:05am
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5 Yard USC

Rule 1-5-6 (page 26) Says each player shall properly wear the mandatory Equipment while the ball is live. The penalty (S27,S23) is 5 yards. I don't think I've ever seen the USC signal given, indeed I think it would confuse the coaches and the fans, as all the rest of the USC signals carry a 15 yd penalty. Should this penalty ever get called? Good preventive officiating, should eliminate the bulk of the issues.

Last edited by Careyy; Sat Aug 16, 2008 at 10:12am.
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Old Sat Aug 16, 2008, 11:22am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Careyy
Rule 1-5-6 (page 26) Says each player shall properly wear the mandatory Equipment while the ball is live. The penalty (S27,S23) is 5 yards. I don't think I've ever seen the USC signal given, indeed I think it would confuse the coaches and the fans, as all the rest of the USC signals carry a 15 yd penalty. Should this penalty ever get called? Good preventive officiating, should eliminate the bulk of the issues.
The 5-yard penalty for illegal equipment is when the infraction is noticed before the snap. It's actually a delay of game penalty because in theory the player didn't participate in a play with the illegal equipment.
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Old Sat Aug 16, 2008, 11:26am
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In our crew we try to prevent this foul. We talk to the player all the time about their chin straps and mouth pieces. But their are times when we say "84 get your mouth piece in" and he does not that we will kill the play at the snap and have to enforce the foul.
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Old Sat Aug 16, 2008, 11:30am
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Wow, yet another rule change they snuck past me. For years it was a dead ball, 5 yard penalty, "Failure to wear Required equipment" if the penalty was called before the snap and 15 yard, USC penalty if a player actually played with illegal equipment AND that 15 yarder was attributed to the Head coach and counted towards his maximum of 2 USC fouls for disqualification.

The current rule makes this penalty a 5 yard USC foul for either a dead ball foul or a live ball foul, and the disqualifying requirement for multiple USC fouls are either a flagrant foul or two "15 yard" USC penalties.

Thanks for mentioning this as whenever that was changed flew way over my head.
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Old Sat Aug 16, 2008, 11:50am
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Upon further review, it appears my initial understanding was, and still is, correct. The USC attributed to the Head Coach, for a live ball violation, still does count as one of the two that will cause disqualification. Sorry about that.
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Old Sat Aug 16, 2008, 01:25pm
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When you consider this violation there are a number of things to consider.

You penalize the head coach when the required equipment is not worn because he has certified all his players are legally equipped, at least, you are suppose to ask that as the referee with your umpire as the witness. That would cover such equipment mentioned in 1-5 under Player Equipment. One rather common one that is a problem for officials is the tailbone protector because some players think they will be faster without it. They may be faster but one whack and they may not be moving at all.

The five yard variety is indeed as mentioned in reality is a delay of game. But if was penalized as a DOG that would affect the clock. As mentioned you try every way possible to avoid one of these, especially, with the mouthpiece.

The fifteen yard one is if the player intentionally removes required equipment and to my way of thinking this should almost never be called. What if you see a runner with his mouthpiece dangling during a run? When did it come out of his mouth? What caused it to come out? Maybe you saw it before the snap; then, why are you going to penalize the player for essentially your mistake in not blowing it dead and giving him a five yarder?

I had an umpire once who threw a flag for failure to wear, live ball. He said the QB did not have the mouthpiece in when the ball was snapped, yet, he let the play go. The team scored on the play but it was called back. That was the winning TD except it was callled back.

Next morning the local newspaper caption reads "Officials Take Away Win" citing the 60 yard penalty negating the TD. The penalty was only 15 but what do the newspaper guys know. More importantly, had the play been blown dead before it started the rest would be guesswork.
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Old Sat Aug 16, 2008, 04:08pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ajmc
...(snip)
Thanks for mentioning this as whenever that was changed flew way over my head.
I'm not going to go back any further in the books other than to 1999 as the point is really moot, but todays rule is just as it was back then as it is now.
A 5-yd penalty using S27/S23 signal combination.
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Old Mon Aug 18, 2008, 03:39pm
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REPLY: For Federation, here are plays that demonstrate the various possibilities:
1. A86 is in the game and you notice that he has no knee pads. (15-yd USC against the HC. He wasn't legally equipped.) 9-8-1h
2. A86 comes the the line and as the snap is imminent, the LJ notices that his mouthpiece is dangling. (5-yd dead ball DOG. He had the proper equipment but was not wearing it properly.) 3-6-2d
3. During the play, you see A86 intentionally remove his mouthpiece during the down. (5-yd USC vs. the player enforced from the succeeding spot) 1-5-6
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Old Tue Aug 19, 2008, 08:11am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob M.
...
3. During the play, you see A86 intentionally remove his mouthpiece during the down. (5-yd USC vs. the player enforced from the succeeding spot) 1-5-6
I must disagree. This is not an unsportsmanlike foul. This is a non-contact foul. Signal 27 has two descriptions below it. One is USC and one is non-contact foul. The fact it is a non-contact foul also means that if you see a player remove a required piece of equipment during the down it is penalized from the succeeding spot.

And just to help me make my point, what is the signal given when an R player gives a fair catch signal and then blocks a K player before the kick ends? It is signal 40 which we all use for blocking below the waist. Well it is also the signal for illegal block.
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