THE DOUBLE FOUL AND POI

Most officials don’t call many double fouls. In fact, many officials can go through an entire season and not have a double foul call to their credit or discredit as the case may be.

Twice in the last two weeks, I have heard of situations where the officials did not know what to do after calling a double foul. I think this stems from not having to deal with double fouls on a regular basis.

In the first situation that I heard about the covering official called a double foul on the two post players who were apparently shoving and pushing each other to the extent that they both fell to the floor. A22 was dribbling the ball up above the key area at the time of the foul call. From all accounts the foul call was justified and it was a good decision to go with the double foul.

Then, the situation went downhill, rule wise at least. The officials had A1 shoot bonus free throws but did not let B1 shoot any free throws because Team B was not in the bonus. Play was then resumed by using the alternating possession arrow. Wrong!

The second situation I heard about was very close to the first. The two “bigs” were charged with fouls against each other in the lane area while A13 had the ball at the elbow. The officials charged both players with personal fouls and then resumed play by using the alternating possession arrow. Wrong again!

The officials were mistaken in how they resumed play in both of the above situations. When double fouls, double technical fouls, and simultaneous fouls, either personal or technical are called, play is resumed at the point of interruption. (POI) The POI is the boundary line nearest where the ball was located when the foul was called.

In both of the above situations, Team A had control of the ball, so play should have been resumed with a throw-in for Team A at the end line or sideline nearest where the ball was located when the double foul was whistled.

The only time following a double foul that play is not resumed with a throw-in is when there was no team control when the double foul was whistled. The classic example of this situation is when A1 shoots a three point shot and while the try is still in flight a double foul is ruled. There is no team control during a try for goal, so if the try fails then play would be resumed using the AP arrow because there was no POI because the ball was in flight.

If the try were successful the point of interruption would be Team B’s throw-in from the end line. (See art 3 below)

Rule 4 Section 36

ART. 1
Method of resuming play due to an official’s inadvertent whistle, an interrupted game, as in 5-4-3, a correctable error, as in 2-10-6, a double personal, double technical or simultaneous foul, as in 4-19-8 and 4-19-10.

ART. 2…Play shall be resumed by one of the following methods:
a. A throw-in to the team that was in control at an out-of-bounds spot nearest to where the ball was located when the interruption occurred.
b. A free throw or a throw-in when the interruption occurred during this activity or if a team is entitled to such.
c. A jump ball or alternating-possession throw-in when neither team is in control and no goal, infraction, nor end of quarter/extra period is involved when the game is interrupted.

ART. 3
When the ball remains live after a violation or foul (as in 4-19-8) during a try for goal, the point of interruption is determined to be when the ball becomes dead following the violation or foul.

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