NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - After an NFL investigation found 11 of the 12 balls used by the New England Patriots in the AFC Championship to be under-inflated, people won't stop talking about "Deflate Gate."
As trivial as it may seem, the amount of air required in a football is a rule, even at the high school level.
According to the Texas University Scholastic League, each football must have 13 pounds. Just like NFL officials, high school referees are required to check footballs before they are used in a game
"The officials check them before the game and most of the time, they're going to check to see what the pressure is in the football," said Nacogdoches High School Head Football Coach Bobby Reyes. "If they have to add a little air, they do."
According to Reyes, it's very rare that the footballs actually have 13 pounds in them. They slightly lose a few ounces over time due to use and age.
"Most quarterbacks don't like the ball aired to 13 pounds and neither do receivers because it's a little harder and more difficult to handle," Reyes said.
The UIL isn't worried about a few ounces being deflated because of use. They're more concerned with intentionally letting air out, which is why the rule is in place.
"I think the UIL does a great job, and I think coaches do a great job of following the rules and not trying to skirt the rules. I know there are some people that try to get by on the edge, but not very many. Most of us try to do a good job," Reyes said. "You want to teach the kids to do the right thing; you don't want to cheat. You want things right."
With Texas high school football coaches teaching their players to follow the rules, the future of the NFL may be in good hands.