SECTION 1. A Series: Started, Broken, Renewed
ARTICLE 1. When to Award Series
A series of 4 consecutive scrimmage downs shall be awarded to the team that is next to put the ball in play by a snap at
the beginning of each period and after a score, safety, touchback or change of team possession. [S8]
A new series shall be awarded to the offense if:
a. It is in legal possession (following the application of any accepted live ball penalty) of the ball beyond the middle
when the ball is declared dead and it is the first time in this series that has happened. If a subsequent play or penalty
brings the ball back behind the middle and the ball is then advanced across the middle line for a second time during
the same series, no new first down shall be awarded. AR 5-1-1-I to II
b. An accepted penalty results in or mandates a first down.
A new series shall be awarded to the defense on its own 5-yard-line if the offense following 4th down has failed to score
or earn a new first down.
A new series shall be awarded to the defense at the dead ball spot after an interception.
SECTION 2. Down and Possession after a Penalty
ARTICLE 1. Foul Before Change of Team Possession
If a penalty is accepted for a foul that occurred during a down before any change of team possession, the ball belongs to
the offense and the down shall be repeated, unless the penalty also involves loss of a down, mandates a first down, or
leaves the ball beyond the middle.
ARTICLE 2. Foul After Change of Team Possession
If a penalty is accepted for a foul that occurred during a down after change of team possession, the ball belongs to the
team in possession when the foul occurred. The next down shall be a first down.
ARTICLE 3. Penalty Declined
If a penalty is declined, the number of the next down shall be whatever it would have been if that foul had not occurred.
ARTICLE 4. Foul Between Downs
If a foul occurs between downs, the number of the next down shall be the same as that established before the foul
occurred, unless enforcement of the penalty leaves the ball beyond the middle or the penalty mandates a first down.
ARTICLE 5. Fouls by Both Teams
If offsetting fouls occur during a down, the previous down shall be repeated.