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Missouri High School Football Officials
Rule 3 Section 6


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Rule 3- Periods, Time Factors, and Substitutions


Section 6- Ball Ready for Play and Delay


  • Art. 1- The ball is ready for play when, after it has been placed for a down the referee gives the ready for play signal. The 25 second clock shall start..


  • Art. 2- Actions or inaction which prevents promptness in putting the ball in play is delay of game.  This includes:
    • Failure to snap or free-kick within 25 seconds after ready-for-play (Delay of Game)
    • Unnecessarily carrying the ball after it has become dead or consuming time by failing to un-pile at the end of the down (Delay of Game)
    • A coach-referee conference after all permissible charged timeouts for the coaches team have been used, and when the referee does not change his ruling (Delay of Game)
    • Failure to wear required equipment when the ball is about to become live (Delay of Game and Failure to Wear Required Equipment)
    • Snapping of free-kicking the ball before it is marked ready for play (Delay of Game)
    • Any other conduct which unduly prolongs the game (Delay of Game)


  • Art. 3- When a team attempts to conserve or consume time illegally the referee shall order the clock to start or stop.


  • Art. 4- Failure of a team to play within two minutes after being ordered to do so by the referee (Forfeiture)


  • Art. 5- Game management is responsible for clearing the field of play and end zones at the beginning of each half so play may begin at the scheduled time.