Hurdling is not allowed in high school football because it can cause injuries. Some people might say that high school players aren’t skilled enough to safely jump over others. However, in pro and college football, it’s allowed.
As a high school football referee, I make sure players don’t hurdle. While some may think it should be allowed, there are good reasons why it isn’t. It might stay allowed in college and pro football but not in high school football.
Why Can’t You Jump Over People in High School Football?
Jumping over players, also known as hurdling, is not allowed to keep everyone safe. Hurdling can cause bad injuries, and people who wanted to keep things safe won their argument.
Hurdling means jumping over another player. In college and pro football, it’s a good way to avoid tackles. But in high school football, it’s not allowed, and it leads to penalties for the team.
“What Is Hurdling?
Hurdling happens when the player with the ball jumps over a defender who’s only touching the ground with their feet. If the defender is already on the ground, like touching it with their knees or arms, it doesn’t count as hurdling. It’s okay to jump over a player on the ground; that’s allowed.
Why Do Players Hurdle?
When a player with the ball is about to get tackled by an opponent, they might jump over that opponent to avoid getting tackled. If the player can’t dodge the defender by moving sideways, they might jump to prevent a big collision. This can be risky, and some people don’t agree on whether it should be allowed.
Hurdling is something players do naturally, even in high school football. When you’re about to crash into someone and can’t avoid it, jumping is just a quick, natural reaction. You do it to stay safe and avoid getting hurt.
Penalties for Hurdling in High School Football
Jumping over a player in high school football can get you a 15-yard penalty. This is just as serious as when a defensive player spears an offensive player, which also gets a 15-yard penalty. If a defensive player spears, the offense gets an automatic first down.
The Player Hurdling May Get Hurt
When there are injuries, it’s not always the player getting jumped over who gets hurt. Sometimes, the player doing the jumping can get injured.
When you hurdle over another player, you might land in a way that causes an injury. You might try to keep yourself safe by extending your arm and end up injuring it in the process.You might try to protect yourself by sticking out your arm and hurt it in the process. You might also run into other players after you jump over someone, leading to more chances for injuries.
Should Jumping Over Players Be Allowed in High School Football?
One reason why hurdling is not allowed in high school football is because high school players may not have the same skills as professionals. Jumping over someone who only has their feet on the ground is tough and needs a lot of strength and agility. There’s a big difference between a pro hurdling and a high school player trying it.
It’s also not fair to make the other player do something against the rules. If you hurdle another player, you might make them tackle or spear you in an illegal way.
But, hurdling is probably riskier for the player who does it. They’re mostly risking getting hurt themselves, not hurting the other player. This makes it different from spearing someone else.
High School Football Is Pretty Safe
Maybe hurdling could be allowed as long as it doesn’t make the game much more dangerous. If it causes a lot more injuries, then it could be banned again in high school football.
High school football can have risks, but it’s not as risky as professional football. Many people get hurt, but the injury rate is lower compared to the NFL. It’s not as dangerous compared to other sports as some people think.
Hurdling Might Stop Injuries Sometimes
The top reason for letting players hurdle in high school football is that it can actually stop injuries instead of causing them. When a player with the ball is about to slam into a defensive lineman, they can avoid a bad crash by hurdling over them.
A defender might try to dive at the legs of the player with the ball. Jumping over them is a smart way to play and could keep everyone from getting hurt.
Hurdling in College Football
A while ago, in college football, you used to get a penalty for hurdling. But about twenty years ago, the NCAA changed the rules, and now, hurdling is allowed. There are only a few rare situations where hurdling is not okay.
Hurdling in Pro Football
In professional football, it’s okay to hurdle, and fans love it when strong and agile players pull it off well. If you time it right, it can be an incredible move, but if you time it wrong, you might lose the ball.
However, you can’t leap over a line of defenders to block a kick anymore, even though it used to be allowed. It’s a bit disappointing because it took incredible skill, but it was also risky for players to get seriously hurt.
Important Points to Remember
- In high school football, jumping over a player with only their feet on the ground is not allowed, and it results in a 15-yard penalty.
- Hurdling is generally allowed in the NFL and college football. It used to be banned in college football, but the NCAA changed the rules.
- You can legally jump over a player who is on the ground, even in high school football. Jumping over someone with their knees or legs on the ground is not considered hurdling.
- Whether hurdling should be allowed in high school football is a bit unclear. It might not significantly increase the number of injuries.