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AHSAA to incorpoarte instant replay for football

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The Alabama High School Athletic Association (AHSAA) has received permission from the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) to provide instant replay for member schools for up to three years beginning with the upcoming 2018 football season.

The AHSAA is partnering with DVSport, Inc., a Pittsburgh (PA) based Software Company, which has provided Instant Replay Solutions in NCAA college football since 2005. The AHSAA Central Board of Control approved the partnership and project at its quarterly board meeting Thursday.  Participation is optional for member schools.

Most of the NCAA’s major conferences use DVSport Instant Replay Solutions  including the Southeastern Conference, Atlantic Coast Conference, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac 12, Ohio Valley, Sunbelt, SWAC, Missouri Valley, Mountain West, Big South, Big Sky, Colonial, MAC and MEAC conferences. DVSport also provides instant replay for the College Football Playoffs, FCS, D-II, D-III playoffs and NAIA championship game.

AHSAA Executive Director Steve Savarese said, “We are grateful to the NFHS for approving our request. This gives our officials the opportunity to use the same technology coaches have been equipped with on their sidelines to get the call right.” 

“While this replay process is in the initial stages of development, the AHSAA is committed to working with DVSport and the NFHS to develop a cost effective process to assist both our coaches and officials In addition, all football state championship games will use the same replay fan experience DVSport provides for SEC contests.”

NFHS Executive Director Bob Gardner said the NFHS permits state associations to experiment in certain situations to determine the future viability of rules changes.  “As technology improvements evolve, the use of instant replay is an area of interest for the NFHS Football Rules Committee,” he said. “We welcome the Alabama High School Athletic Association’s experiment in use of replay in the 2018 season.  We hope to learn the advantages as well as any problems associated with replay from the use in Alabama.”

The AHSAA, which has been actively studying instant replay options for the last five years, along with DVSport Instant Replay Solutions, will collect and study the data over the next year with a possibility of three years of experimentation.

"Alabama is at the forefront of using cutting-edge-technology in the high school athletics setting and with its deep football roots, it is a perfect place for this partnership to begin." stated DVSport CEO Brian Lowe.
   

DVSport Replay technology gives officials the ability to review video from multiple camera angles within seconds of the play happening. Once a coach challenges a play, the on-field referee will be able to review a play on a system located on the sideline.

No stranger to replay solutions, DVSport has been the leading provider of Instant Replay Solutions since 2005 in both the professional and intercollegiate sports markets. DVSport’s replay solutions have been used in over 400 venues, 10,000 collegiate football games, 20,000 collegiate basketball games, and 1,500 professional games to complete more than 100,000 reviews.

The AHSAA’s protocol will be as follows:

Section 1. Instant replay is a process whereby video review is used to let stand or reverse certain on-field decisions made by game officials.

Section 2. The instant replay process operates under the assumption that the official’s ruling on the field is correct. The replay official may reverse a ruling only if the video evidence convinces him or her beyond all doubt that the ruling on the field was incorrect. Without indisputable video evidence that the ruling on the field was incorrect, the ruling will stand as called.

Instant replay will be available at schools that use DVSport Instant Replay’s system. No other instant replay system will be allowed, according to the AHSAA protocol.

Complete details of the AHSAA Instant Replay protocol can be found at www.ahsaa.com.

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