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Members of the Georgia High School Association executive committee voted Tuesday to implement a shot clock in varsity basketball games. The plan calls for the 30-second shot clock to be phased in over the course of the next three seasons.

The Georgia High School Association (GHSA) executive committee met Tuesday in Thomaston and overwhelmingly approved the addition of a shot clock for varsity boys and girls basketball games. 

The 30-second clock will be phased into GHSA games over the course of the next three seasons beginning with the upcoming school year. In 2020-21 the shot clock will only be in use in approved holiday tournaments and showcases. Year 2 (2021-22) individual regions will be able to decide whether or not they want to implement the shot clock in their region games or not. Year 3 (2022-23) the shot clock will be enforced in all varsity GHSA basketball games, including the state playoffs. 

The proposal made it through the basketball subcommittee and went before the entire state executive committee where only 10 votes were cast against the measure among the over 60-member committee according to Warren County athletic director and head football coach Steven Simpson, who represents GHSA Region 7-A.

Georgia becomes the ninth state to add a shot clock to high school basketball games. Those other eight states are California, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Dakota and Washington. College basketball utilizes a 30-second shot clock while NBA games have 24 seconds. 

The GHSA shot clock will give teams with the ball 30 seconds to hit the rim with a shot attempt. If they cannot do so, the ball is turned over to the opposing team. Those in favor say it quickens the pace of the game while also preparing players for the next level. University of Georgia head men’s basketball coach Tom Crean, although not a member of the committee, was among those in favor of adding a shot clock at the high school level. He posted a video to Twitter Monday afternoon advocating the change and was even on hand in Thomaston to share his opinion. Opponents’ concerns were more logistical in nature and had to do with shot clock operation. 

All of the details surrounding the shot clock addition were not known as of presstime Tuesday. The Union-Recorder will follow up in the weekend edition and also get reactions of local high school basketball coaches. 

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