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Why Nebraska needs a shot clock

Fast forward sixty years and we have no shot clock at the high school level here in Nebraska. Along with our lack of a shotclock comes the Dean Smith strategy of passing the ball endlessly without a shot.

March 11, 2022

To find a time in history where basketball did not have a shotclock, you need to go all the way back to 1954. It was originally added because legendary coach, Dean Smith, would protect big leads by refusing to shoot.

Fast forward sixty years and we have no shotclock at the high school level here in Nebraska. Along with our lack of a shot clock comes the Dean Smith strategy of passing the ball endlessly without a shot.

This causes a clear problem; that being games are essentially over and decided often times at the three-minute mark, rather then when that final buzzer goes off.

Central and Millard North are standout offenders of the practice of not shooting. Their matchup earlier this season at The Stable, only stands as another reason to add a shot clock.

Many people who oppose the shotclock cite tradition or that it would be a great change as the reason to not add a shot clock. But at the end of the day many more people are advocating for a shot clock then those who are against it.

This boils down to an NSAA decision, and the change has been talked about for quite some time now. Ultimately, all that is required is monetary resources to install a simple shot clock at each school. This could hopefully be achieved in just one offseason.

The results of a shot clock  in high school basketball has been seen very recently in the Metro Holiday Tournament. All rounds, after the first, were held at Baxter Arena and featured a shot clock.

The shot clock added an element to high school hoops that we have not seen ever. Teams could not hide when up by eight points, they had to keep trying to score to build their lead.

The crown jewel of the tournament was the shootout between Central and Bellevue West that ended 72-69. It was an extremely up tempo game with Jayden Dawson and Josiah Doltzler exchanging buckets. When the three minute mark came around Bellevue West had built up a lead, but they did not have the option of passing the ball around until the final horn went off. Instead Central fought back, featuring some clutch buckets from PJ Davis and a big time triple from Chris McCants.

That game was merely an example of what could have been. The hope for some is that due to the State Tournament being held at Pinacle Bank Arena, the tournament could utilize the shotclock already in place.

For too long hoop heads of Nebraska have endured games that were decided with a handful of minutes left in the game. The addition of a shotclock would make for a better product for the players, fans and everyone else involved.

This is why we do not want, but need a shot clock.

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