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10 Ball Handling

Ball Boys

Chapter 10. Ball Handling
Pg. 42

Ball Persons
It is imperative that the ball persons
are properly instructed and that they
understand the importance of their role.
Ball persons must stay off the field to
lessen the chance they’ll run on at an
inappropriate time. The number of ball
persons and their attentiveness and
ability is important, but those individuals
will only perform to the standards and
desires of the officials.
A careful orientation of ball persons
is important, including where the ball
people should position themselves,
when they can expect to deliver a ball,
how they should shovel it, and how they
should adjust to circumstances, including
punts and kickoffs.
In inclement or muddy conditions, the
ball persons must ensure that their ball is
kept dry and clean. It is the responsibility
of game management to supply towels
for that purpose.
The wing official(s) must conduct a
meeting with the ball persons before the
game. The Linesman and Line Judge
should try to build a positive rapport with
their respective ball person.
Introduce yourself to ball persons.
Identify the lead and write down his
name; be sure to address him by name.
Instruct the personnel that they are
to stay behind the sideline in close
proximity to the wing official at all
times. They are to begin each play
approximately five yards in the offensive
backfield and six feet off the sideline.
The ball persons must keep up with the
play at all times, normally mirroring the
position of the wing official on their side
of the field.
When a new ball is required the wing
official will tum to the ball person and
request that it be tossed to him. They are
not to enter the field and give the ball to
the Umpire.
When requesting the ball, establish
direct eye contact with the ball person
and then ask for the ball verbally and
non-verbally (i.e. clapping hands together
or placing hands in front of you as to
catch the ball). Instruct the ball person
to toss the ball to you with an underhand
toss only after an official has requested
the ball.
Advise that a new ball will not be
required on every play, but they must
be prepared to provide a ball as quickly
as possible at your request in such
situations as: a change of possession,
measurements, incomplete pass, or if
the ball becomes dead in your side zone.
Even if the other team is on offense you
may request “dummy ball” for double
spot. We will not allow the “kicking ball”
to come in on kick plays.
Ball persons are to remain on their
sideline except to retrieve an incomplete
pass or kicks that become dead out
of bounds on the opposing sideline or
beyond the end line. If it is not possible
for an official to relay the ball back to
them, they should run around the end
zone to retrieve the ball, being careful not
to enter the field of play.
After tries and field goal attempts, the
ball persons take a position well behind
the posts in order to recover the ball after
the kick. They will place the kicking ball
at the base of the goal post for the Back
Judge to take to the kickoff.
The kicking ball can be inspected by
the Back Judge as he makes his way to
his free kick position.