As we gear up for the 2023-2024 high school basketball season here in New Jersey, things will be a little different out on the court.

The big rule change, beginning this season, eliminates one-and-one free throws in high school basketball in the United States.

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Photo by Todd Greene on Unsplash
Photo by Todd Greene on Unsplash

So what exactly does the new rule entail?

Teams will automatically shoot two free throws when in the bonus, which is now five fouls per quarter.

It used to be that teams would shoot one-and-one free throws in the bonus, which was when the other team committed 7 fouls in a half, and 2 free throws when 10 fouls were committed per half.

Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash
Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

I was made aware of the rule change recently because my son and daughter both play travel basketball and the new rule applies to younger leagues as well.

However, I didn't know the reason behind the change. I was talking to a referee this past weekend who quickly mentioned it had to do with safety.

So is that true?

When I got home, I looked it up right away. YES, that IS true.

The National Federation of State High School Associations approved the rule change several months ago.

The rule committee studied data that showed high injury rates on rebounding situations and saw this as an opportunity to reduce opportunities for rough play during rebounds.

That's according to Lindsey Atkinson, NFHS Director of Sports. She went on to say:

Additionally, resetting the fouls each quarter will improve game flow and allow teams to adjust their play by not carrying foul totals to quarters two and four.
Photo by Rajesh Rajput on Unsplash
Photo by Rajesh Rajput on Unsplash

Personal fouls remain at five.

As the high school season gets underway, what do you think of the new rule change?

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