View Full Version : Dopey question about the Shot Clock

03-02-2008, 02:36 PM
Since the shot clock has no tenths of a second, how does the shot clock going off work? By that, I mean, the clock seems to go off when it hits 0. However, when it turns 0, it should really be 0.9 seconds left. So is it really a 34 second shot clock? Or do they handle that by making the 35 tick one second long -- i.e., the entire times it's display 14, it's really counting 14.0-13.1?

Any insight would be great!


03-02-2008, 02:42 PM
It reads the previous full second until the next second has been reached.

03-02-2008, 03:02 PM
Which means that if the shot clock is on "1," there may be only 0.1 seconds left.


03-02-2008, 03:31 PM
35 means there are between 34.0000001 and 35 seconds left.
34 means there are between 33.0000001 and 34 seconds left.
33 means there are between 32.0000001 and 31 seconds left.
2 means there are between 1.0000001 and 2 seconds left.
1 means there are between 0.0000001 and 1 second left.
0 means time is completely up.

03-02-2008, 05:07 PM
Great question, great answer.

03-02-2008, 05:25 PM
Lotta smart guys went/go to Duke :)

03-02-2008, 06:26 PM
But the buzzer is actually when it "stops".....or is that wrong?

03-03-2008, 12:57 AM
Thanks for the reply everyone. That question has always bothered me! You guys are the best.

And to answer the last question, yes, the buzzer goes off when it stops. The buzzer and the light definitely go off when it's done. 0.0.

03-03-2008, 01:53 AM
Didn't you hear? Duke actually gets a 36 second shot clock - little known fact we try to keep secret =)

03-03-2008, 08:39 AM
Didn't you hear? Duke actually gets a 36 second shot clock - little known fact we try to keep secret =)

Unlv got a 47-second one once. And still didn't get a shot off. :D

03-03-2008, 08:51 AM
In yesterday UT and UK game, UK got a shot off with 0.0 showing on the shot clock. Refs allowed it. Announcers said it is the horn not the clock that counts.

New one on me...

03-03-2008, 10:28 AM
The UK at UT shot and the fact that it is the horn, not the clock, that signals the violation suggest that when the clock hits "0" there are actually 0.9 seconds left.

03-03-2008, 01:19 PM
It is the horn, not the clock that counts. Another thing, the ball must hit the rim or go in the basket, so the countdown doesn't end until that point. Even if a shot was taken before the horn, it must enter the basket before the horn (and red light) to count. That's my understanding, but I haven't been able to find my pdf of the rules. Maybe someone has a handy copy, and can educate us.

03-03-2008, 01:27 PM
Even if a shot was taken before the horn, it must enter the basket before the horn (and red light) to count.

This is incorrect. As long as the shot is hoisted before the red light/horn, the shot is counted if it goes in the basket. This means that a player could shoot a 40-footer with one second left on the shot clock and the ball could fly through the air as the red light/horn go off and still count if it falls in. The shot clock and game clock both work on the same principle.

However, if a shot is taken before the red light/horn but misses and does not hit the rim, then the play becomes a shot clock violation.

03-03-2008, 01:53 PM
Cameron is correct on this one... The shot must only be released from the player's hand when time expires and the horn sounds in order to not be a shot clock violation.

03-03-2008, 01:58 PM
For end of game situations, it is the red light rather than the horn that counts. Light travels faster than sound; therefore the red light enters the eyes before the sound waves from the horn enter the ears. Officially, it is the light.

As far as the shot clock is concerned, I think it's the horn.

(And by the way, the OP question really was kind of silly, if you think about it. For a long time we didn't have tenths of a second on the game clock; it also ticked off in seconds. And if you think hard, you could apply the same question to any clock regardless of the intervals being monitored. For example, with the current tenth-of-a-second clock, when does the tenth click off, before or after the tenth is gone? What if you broke it into hudnredths of a second? You could still ask the same question, etc., etc., ad infinitum.)