• IWasAtTheGame

OT in OK

Overtime in Oklahoma High School football. We see it every once in a while but before 1974, there were no overtimes. Ties were determined by the team with the most first downs and penetrations (inside the 20 yard line). Here is a history of how Overtimes came about.


Immediately following the football season, principals and football coaches were asked to evaluate the championship football plan and make suggestions that, in their opinion, would upgrade the administration of the championships plan. Those suggestions were gathered and presented to the Football Advisory Committee to for evaluation and to make any recommendations that, in their opinion, are needed.

FEBRUARY 13, 1971 : Extending Games : REJECTED

With all of the recommendations in consideration, it was their unanimous opinion that they were not favorable to any championship playoff plan would extend a football game beyond it regular playing time. They did propose that the following playoff change be submitted to the OSSAA Board for approval. “Add third paragraph to Rule 14, Section 9, Tie Games Add – (c) If a final championship football game ends in a tie score, the two tied teams shall be declared co-champions.”

APRIL 1971 : Proposal Printed in OSSAA April Bulletin

The Board approved the proposal and it was printed in the OSSAA April 1971 Bulletin.

This rule abolished penetrations as a deciding factor in state playoff finals.

May 1, 1974 : Tie Breaker Revisited

At a Football Advisory Meeting, the committee discussed the possibility of a tie-breaking plan but it was the consensus of the committee that the present plan was a better plan than those used in other states.

December 6, 1974 : Class 3A State Championship : Ada and Owasso tie 7-7

Ada and Owasso fought to a 7-7 tie in the 1974 Class C State Championship.

After the game Ada head coach Craig McBroom said he was sure his team had just won the school's 11th championship. In the other dressing room, Owasso coach Gary Harper was sure his Rams had lost. If Ada had known the rule, they may not have ran the ball to the sideline and not attempting to score on fourth down on the Ada 17 giving the ball back to Ada with 24 seconds.

Owasso did not learn of their winning of the championship until the team was in their locker room back in Owasso and head coach Gary Harper received a phone call. A celebration broke out!

December 10, 1974 : Both Team Representatives Meet

The following Wednesday, OSSAA Executive Secretary Claude White had both representatives from the schools meet in OKC. Ada high school principal Darryl Hill was quoted to say “We question whether that is a rule, we feel like we are state champions.” But at the end of the day (and into the night), no decision was made.

December 11, 1974 : OSSAA Board of Directors Meet

Ada came to the board to present a case for their winning the championship but the final outcome was the officials statement of the Board which referred to the Rule 14, Section 9 that “it applies only to those teams which must advance in an elimination series, whereby unanimously reaffirms it’s position that the use of penetrations, first downs and net yards shall not be interpreted to determine a winner in a final championship virtue of playing to a 7-7 tie, should each be declared champions for the 1974 Class 3A football championship.”

January 22, 1975 : New Plan Needed?

At the OSSAA Board of Directors Meeting, the Football Advisory Committee presented a recommendation which was approved to “conduct a survey of all football-playing schools to determine if they desire to retain the present plan for tie games or to adopt some form of a tie breaker where the score only would be used.”

February 1975 : Football Playing Schools Vote

The football playing schools voted 164-81 to have the Board of Directors revise a new plan for determining a winner in the case of a tie score.

April 2, 1975 : Football Tie-Breaker Referendum

Board of Directors, because of the overwhelming vote of 164-81, proposed a rule to adopt the “ten yard line overtime plan” found on page 79 of the current rule book in breaking a tie in any game.

August 16, 1975 : New Overtime Plan Approved

The “ten yard line overtime plan” wording was approved by the board and put in place for the upcoming season.

September 1975 : Four Overtime Games in Week #1

Del City over US Grant 19-13 Del City won the coin flip and head coach Henry Manning chose to go on defense first and his defense did not disappoint. His plan was to hold them from scoring then kick a field goal to win. They did hold them when they forced QB Tiger McDermott into a fumble. When they got the ball, they gave the ball to tailback Steve Hammond, who, earlier in the game had fumbled on his first three carries and Hammond scored on his first chance for the 19-13 win.

Gore over Warner 6-0 (OT)

Wetumka over Savanna 7-6 (OT)

Ryan over Temple 6-0 (2OT)

November-December 1975 : 1975 Playoffs

Three playoff games go into overtime

- Class B 1st Round : Mooreland over Texhoma 18-12 (OT) - aClass B 1st Round : Washington over Maud 27-19 (2OT) - Class 3A Semifinals : Okmulgee over Stillwater 3-0 (OT)

December 1976 : First OT Championship Game

Class 2A State Championship : Bristow downs Vinita 13-10

December 1994 : First (and only) Multiple OT Championship Game

There have been seven State Championship games go into overtime including a three overtime game in the 1994 Class 5A title game in which Woodward defeated Broken Bow 35-28.

December 2010 : Last OT Championship Game

The last championship overtime game was played in 2010. There were actually two. Class 4A Douglass defeated Wagoner 20-13 and Class A Woodland downing Stratford 6-0.

Thru the 2018 Playoffs : Number of Playoff OT Games?

There have been a total of 136 overtime playoff games since 1975.

-105 : 1 OT games

- 20 : 2 OT games

- 6 : 3 OT games

- 2 : 4 OT games

- 1 : 5 OT game -1991 Class 3A Quarterfinals - Seminole over Watonga 37-34

- 2 : 6 OT games - 1983 Class 3A 1st Round - Coweta over Muldrow 20-13 - 1998 Class B 1st Round - Garber over Cyril 82-80

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