Shot clock approved for boys basketball

South Kitsap senior Mike Longmire predicted his coach would be “hating life next year” if a shot clock were introduced into boys basketball.

It happened Friday as the Washington Interscholastic Activities Associations’s Rep Assembly approved an amendment to implement a 35-second shot clock, passing the measure 42-11 at Renton’s Spirit of Washington Events Center. The shot clock for girls basketball will remain at 30 seconds.

But South coach John Callaghan said he wasn’t as upset about the news as some might expect.

He doesn’t like the change simply because he feels it isn’t necessary.

The Wolves traveled to a tournament in 1999 in Loomis, Calif., where they used a 35-second clock.

“It never came into play,” he said.

And he doesn’t think it will have a significant impact for South this winter.

“I doubt that we ever held the ball for more than 35 seconds,” he said. “I don’t think we’re going to change how we play.”

Callaghan feels the shot clock’s most significant impact will come at the end of games, but perhaps not as much as some people think.

“I think you can still grind it out in the halfcourt,” he said. “Very seldom do we go more than 35 seconds without putting up a shot.”

He said the rule will also add strategy toward the end of each quarter.

“It will make people at least think about holding the ball for the last shot a little more than the past,” Callaghan said. “But you still have to take care of the ball, execute and play good defense.”

He also is curious to see how the clock impacts defenses. Callaghan thinks teams that play zone defense, which usually are designed to take away the inside game, might benefit from the new rule. That’s because teams that can’t get the ball to post players might have to rely on taking outside shots with little time left on the clock.

States using a basketball shot clock for high schools

• California — 30 seconds for girls, 35 seconds for boys

• Maryland — 30 seconds for girls

• Massachusetts — 30 seconds for boys and girls

• New York — 30 seconds for girls, 35 seconds for boys

• North Dakota — 30 seconds for girls, 35 seconds for boys

• Rhode Island — 30 seconds for girls, 35 seconds for boys

• South Dakota — 35 seconds for boys and girls

• Washington — 30 seconds for girls, 35 seconds for boys

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