Posted February 12, 2014

NCAA proposes rule change to allow time for defensive substitutions

NCAA
(The Denver Post via Getty Images)

Air Force coach Troy Calhoun is chairman of the NCAA Football Rules Committee. (The Denver Post via Getty Images)

Have we seen the end of hurry-up offenses in college football? If the NCAA gets its way, that might be the case.

The NCAA Football Rules Committee announced on Wednesday that it has proposed a rule change to allow time for defensive substitutions within the first 10 seconds of the regular 40-second play clock, regardless of whether or not the offense substitutes. Offenses would not be allowed to snap the ball until at least the 29-second mark of the play clock under this proposal. The rule would not apply during the final two minutes of a half.

If an offense snapped the ball before the 29-second mark, a five-yard delay-of-game penalty would be assessed. The proposal must be approved by the NCAA Playing Rules Oversight Panel but could be implemented for the 2014 season.

Air Force head coach Troy Calhoun, the chair of the committee, said the focus of the new proposal is safety.

“This rules change is being made to enhance student-athlete safety by guaranteeing a small window for both teams to substitute,” said Calhoun. “As the average number of plays per game has increased, this issue has been discussed with greater frequency by the committee in recent years, and we felt like it was time to act in the interests of protecting our student-athletes.”

Current rules dictate that defensive players are not guaranteed a chance to substitute unless the offense substitutes first.

Hurry-up offenses have caused concern for some coaches who feature traditional offenses. Alabama’s Nick Saban and Arkansas’ Bret Bielema are among the handful of coaches who have been critical of the fast-paced style, claiming that it puts defensive players at a higher risk of injury because of a lack of substitution time. According to a July 2013 story by SI.com’s Stewart Mandel, researchers agreed that while that theory might be true, at the time not enough data existed to support rule changes.

Additionally, the NCAA suggested that a targeting penalty overturned on review should not result in a 15-yard penalty assessed to the offending team.

The committee recommended that if the instant replay official rules that a disqualification should not have occurred, and if the targeting foul is not accompanied by another personal foul, the 15-yard penalty for targeting should not be enforced.

During the 2013 season, officials enforced the 15-yard penalty even if the foul was overturned.

27 comments
JeffBockert
JeffBockert

The no huddle offense is one of the most exciting things about the game. The game has always change as people innovate - especially offensively. 

northwoods_buckeye
northwoods_buckeye

So, the offensive players aren't at a greater risk of injury? Only the defense? Sounds like the defense needs more conditioning drills.

JamesTeasdale
JamesTeasdale

I find it curious that so many trolls are against leveling the playing field between offenses and defenses. Teams that run the HUNH can't line up and play like men. Iif they actually stopped being pu$$ie$ and lined up to play football as it's meant to be played, Bama would hand them their a$$e$ 99 out 100 times........

AlaGator
AlaGator

Saban losses = Time for a rule change.  Crimson Whiner.

TimHarb
TimHarb

how about clarifying what targeting is.  It is sad when you see the head of officials of a conference say it isn't targeting and they refs still eject the player.

JeffOH12
JeffOH12

I seem to remember Saban doing some hurry up of his own when his team was behind. I guess it's OK to throw "safety" out the window when your the one that is losing. 

mashley278
mashley278

SO hurry up offenses are the issue...not the concussions...I see (and I'm a Bama fan)

BearDuck
BearDuck

Are we going to add rules about BMI, too?  No?  Then drop the farce that this is about health & safety.  Spend time on conditioning and not weight gain and it wouldn't be a problem.

dans4au
dans4au

@si_ncaafb complete BS. So now teams can't run a 2 minute offense at the end of the half or game?

leesuperstar375
leesuperstar375

@si_ncaafb What a bunch of idiots. What if a team is down 3 scores with a momentum shift? Just throw in the towel I guess?

JeffBockert
JeffBockert

@JamesTeasdale   You are an idiot. Oklahoma beat them with the freshman QB. Maybe you've been sleeping. Maybe you'd like to go back to when they didn't throw forward passes too? 

JeffBockert
JeffBockert

@AlaGator  It's not enough that he got handed a spot in the title game the past few years I guess. I'm so sick of him. I'm glad they got worked their last two games. However, even though they lost their starting QB and lost two games straight, you know their business partners will make sure they are ranked highly again to start next year. 

JamesTeasdale
JamesTeasdale

@AlaGator Saban's winning has also called for numerous rules changes in the SEC. Remember when Tubberville, Richt and Fulmer got together and proposed the "Saban rule" restricting Head Coaches contact with recruits? So it would seem to me that that street goes both ways.

JeffBockert
JeffBockert

@JeffOH12   Just like he changed his tune about teams that can't even win their conference getting into the title game. It's ok if it works for him, if it works against him, then he cries about it like a child. He has no class and it an example of what is wrong with college football. 

DanaBunner
DanaBunner

@dans4au @si_ncaafbYou need to read the article.  It states that this rule would not apply during the final 2 minutes of a half.

mashley278
mashley278

@iamstrick @si_ncaafbOOoohhhh I see...you're an Oklahoma fan. Win something then whine about Saban.

JeffOH12
JeffOH12

@mashley278 @si_ncaafb  Saban went hurry up and threw safety out the window when he was getting beat by Oklahoma. I remember you saying that OK didn't have a chance in that game.  Karma finally bit you in the a$$.