Clear Path Foul

A clear path foul in basketball is only considered under specific circumstances and formations. As a result, it isn’t a particularly common foul to occur and often needs to be reviewed before it’s called.

A clear path foul in basketball occurs when an opponent is fouled by a defender, even though the opponent doesn’t have a defender between themselves and the basket. In order for a clear path foul to be called, the ball must also be over the tip of the half-court circle. Due to the specific conditions needed for a clear path foul to be called, it’s easy to mistake it for a common foul.

What is Considered a Clear Path Foul in Basketball?

A clear path foul is called under specific circumstances, and those circumstances may arise in a couple of different ways. This can be due to the speed in which the game is played, meaning a defender may not reach the goal in time for an opponent to be fouled on before the clear path foul is called.

Whilst fairly minute and inconsequential clear path fouls may seem, they do carry punishments normally consisting of several free throws given to the opposing team.