News Article: NCAA rules committee exploring changes to limit faked injuries in college football

TIDE-HSV

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You're right. However, there are now fewer kids joining Pee Wee and other clubs than in the past and a lot of that is due to injury concerns. Considering both solutions try to achieve the same result of reducing the number of fictional injuries impacting game play, there's no harm in putting a positive spin on it. There may not be direct liability for injuries, but basing decisions framed within the parameters of player safety as opposed to just the outcome of the game would put the schools, conferences, etc in a positive light.
I'm not sure if we're disagreeing. I think the three plays - minimum - fulfills both the need to examine the player and also avoids the temptation for a free TO. As above, the sole hole I see is that the coach sends in a dispensable third stringer to stop play. Stopping that, if it occurs, would lead to a complicated procedure and judgment calls...
 
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IndyBison

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You also can't go as fast in the NFL.
I've seen this a few times, but I'm not aware of any rule differences affecting a different pace of play. Both have a 40-second play clock and the ball is usually placed and ready for play 28-32 seconds most of the time. The official won't step away from the ball until the crew is in position and ready to officiate.
 

IndyBison

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I'm pretty sure they can afford it, no matter the Conference...
All divisions use the same rule. We were supposed to get a $10 raise/official/game at the D3 level but it has been suspended the past 2 seasons due to budget restrictions. They aren't adding an official for this purpose. It would be the responsibility of the officials on the field to track it. Games with replay may be able to use the replay staff to help.
 
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CB4

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I've seen this a few times, but I'm not aware of any rule differences affecting a different pace of play. Both have a 40-second play clock and the ball is usually placed and ready for play 28-32 seconds most of the time. The official won't step away from the ball until the crew is in position and ready to officiate.
The clock doesn’t stop on a live ball after a first down. Those 8-12 seconds you reference to get “ready for play” don’t come off the clock in the college game. On average, offensives in college run 10-15 more plays in a game than offenses in the NFL. When there are a fewer snaps, the pace of the game is affected.
 

CrimsonNagus

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I've seen this a few times, but I'm not aware of any rule differences affecting a different pace of play. Both have a 40-second play clock and the ball is usually placed and ready for play 28-32 seconds most of the time. The official won't step away from the ball until the crew is in position and ready to officiate.
This post tells me you don't watch as much football as you claim. The bolded part is just a flat out lie. You don't have to watch college football long to see the refs rushing around, setting the ball super quick and jumping out of the way as the ball is snapped before all the refs are in their final positions. It happens all the time in HUNH offensive games.
 
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Titans&Tide

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This post tells me you don't watch as much football as you claim. The bolded part is just a flat out lie. You don't have to watch college football long to see the refs rushing around, setting the ball super quick and jumping out of the way as the ball is snapped before all the refs are in their final positions. It happens all the time in HUNH offensive games.
I believe he was referring to NFL officials not stepping away from the ball until the crew is in position.
 

BamaBuc

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All divisions use the same rule. We were supposed to get a $10 raise/official/game at the D3 level but it has been suspended the past 2 seasons due to budget restrictions. They aren't adding an official for this purpose. It would be the responsibility of the officials on the field to track it. Games with replay may be able to use the replay staff to help.
Next time you see it happen, count how many seconds the 'D' has to catch their breath, before the player gets to the sideline! I'll bet in most cases it's at least two-three minutes, (if not more)...
Also check out how much the NCAA pays their executives! So don't say they can't afford it even at your D3 level!
All divisions using the same rule doesn't make it right, like a good portion of the NCAA rules!!
Sounds like you just might be some level of NCAA official yourself, that doesn't want to have another official because he might lose some money out of his paycheck
!?!
 

IndyBison

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The clock doesn’t stop on a live ball after a first down. Those 8-12 seconds you reference to get “ready for play” don’t come off the clock in the college game. On average, offensives in college run 10-15 more plays in a game than offenses in the NFL. When there are a fewer snaps, the pace of the game is affected.
If you watch closely you'll notice the clock starts on first downs in bounds most of the time within 4-6 seconds of stopping in NCAA. This will happen before the ball is placed. As you get closer to the end of a half when time is more critical the R will make sure the ball is set and ready before starting it.

I'm not sure if the difference in number of plays is 10-15 but it's definitely possible. There are two likely reasons for any difference. Once is due to the clock stoppages mentioned above that don't exist in the NFL. The other is more propensity for NCAA teams to want to go faster. For some reason I don't see NFL teams that try to go as fast as some NCAA teams. But they could if they wanted. The rules are no different affecting pace.

This post tells me you don't watch as much football as you claim. The bolded part is just a flat out lie. You don't have to watch college football long to see the refs rushing around, setting the ball super quick and jumping out of the way as the ball is snapped before all the refs are in their final positions. It happens all the time in HUNH offensive games.
I watch significantly more college football than a reasonable person should. But I often watch it to study the officials and learn what they are doing. As an umpire I pay very close attention to the ball rotations and how quickly the ball is placed. The NFL has crisper mechanics in this area and probably have the ball spotted a little quicker on average than an NCAA crew. There is very little "rushing around" most of the game by officials at either level. 80% of the plays the ball is ready for play in 8-12 seconds at both levels. This is something I check in my games every play so

Next time you see it happen, count how many seconds the 'D' has to catch their breath, before the player gets to the sideline! I'll bet in most cases it's at least two-three minutes, (if not more)...
Also check out how much the NCAA pays their executives! So don't say they can't afford it even at your D3 level!
All divisions using the same rule doesn't make it right, like a good portion of the NCAA rules!!
Sounds like you just might be some level of NCAA official yourself, that doesn't want to have another official because he might lose some money out of his paycheck
!?!
I don't understand what you are saying with your first comment.

We are paid by the schools directly and the amount is set by the conference. The NCAA has no say or involvement in our fees until we get to the playoffs. And we are actually paid LESS for playoff gams than regular season games. They do pay mileage and a per diem though. I'm not sure if the same is true for D1/D2 officials. I believe the D1 officials may be paid by the conferences but still not the NCAA.

And we would LOVE to have more officials working. We work 7-man crews in our conference and we would love to have an 8-man crew even if the 8th was an alternate that could keep track of something like this. If the conference/schools can't afford to pay us an extra $70/game as a crew they can't afford to hire another official at $180 ($225 for NAIA).
 

CB4

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If you watch closely you'll notice the clock starts on first downs in bounds most of the time within 4-6 seconds of stopping in NCAA. This will happen before the ball is placed. As you get closer to the end of a half when time is more critical the R will make sure the ball is set and ready before starting it.

I'm not sure if the difference in number of plays is 10-15 but it's definitely possible. There are two likely reasons for any difference. Once is due to the clock stoppages mentioned above that don't exist in the NFL. The other is more propensity for NCAA teams to want to go faster. For some reason I don't see NFL teams that try to go as fast as some NCAA teams. But they could if they wanted. The rules are no different affecting pace.
.
No they can’t. Fewer snaps in the NFL is dictated by fewer clock stoppages. The fake injury situation in college football is much a product of number of offense plays as it is how “fast” they run them. And if I run fewer snaps because the clock continues to run I am indeed “playing slower”.

Take for example an NFL game where a team has under two minutes and no timeouts left and need to score a touchdown in order to tie or win the game. It virtually eliminates the middle of the field. Even if you make a first down in bounds, the clock continues run. In the college game, the clock stops in order to spot the ball and move the chains after a first down. So those 8-12 seconds you mentioned to spot the ball and ready the crew are “preserved” in the college game. Spike the ball and 3-4 seconds off the clock. In the same scenario, 12-15 seconds off the clock in the NFL. Two minutes with no timeouts in the college game is an eternity. In the NFL, because of running clock, not so much.

Look at Tennessee and Oklahoma as examples. The stated goal of those offenses is to get aligned and snapped in the first 8-10 seconds of the play clock. And they want to approach 85 or more snaps per game.

There are NFL teams that choose to go fast, but even those “up tempo teams” are averaging only 70 snaps a game. The same type up tempo team in college football are in the 80’s. And it is due differences in clock stoppages between the leagues.

Additionally because of the differences in clock stoppages after first downs , teams in the NFL have a preponderance to “milk the clock” late in games when up multiple scores, because if they give up a “chunk play” on defense resulting a first down, the clock still runs. In college, it stops. In the college game, every time you “move the sticks” you get a “mini timeout”. In the pro game, the clock continues giving a greater strategic benefit to a team with a multiple score lead
 

IndyBison

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No they can’t. Fewer snaps in the NFL is dictated by fewer clock stoppages. The fake injury situation in college football is much a product of number of offense plays as it is how “fast” they run them. And if I run fewer snaps because the clock continues to run I am indeed “playing slower”.

Take for example an NFL game where a team has under two minutes and no timeouts left and need to score a touchdown in order to tie or win the game. It virtually eliminates the middle of the field. Even if you make a first down in bounds, the clock continues run. In the college game, the clock stops in order to spot the ball and move the chains after a first down. So those 8-12 seconds you mentioned to spot the ball and ready the crew are “preserved” in the college game. Spike the ball and 3-4 seconds off the clock. In the same scenario, 12-15 seconds off the clock in the NFL. Two minutes with no timeouts in the college game is an eternity. In the NFL, because of running clock, not so much.

Look at Tennessee and Oklahoma as examples. The stated goal of those offenses is to get aligned and snapped in the first 8-10 seconds of the play clock. And they want to approach 85 or more snaps per game.

There are NFL teams that choose to go fast, but even those “up tempo teams” are averaging only 70 snaps a game. The same type up tempo team in college football are in the 80’s. And it is due differences in clock stoppages between the leagues.

Additionally because of the differences in clock stoppages after first downs , teams in the NFL have a preponderance to “milk the clock” late in games when up multiple scores, because if they give up a “chunk play” on defense resulting a first down, the clock still runs. In college, it stops. In the college game, every time you “move the sticks” you get a “mini timeout”. In the pro game, the clock continues giving a greater strategic benefit to a team with a multiple score lead
I agree with everything you say here. But I don't see how it relates to the original point there are rules in the NFL that don't allow a team to go as fast as NCAA. There are no rule differences affecting the pace throughout the game and the clock stoppage issue at the end of a half would cause the offense to go faster in NFL than NCAA not slower.

One thing that prevents a fake injury near the end of a half in NCAA is the play clock status after an injury. At one time the defense could gain an advantage in time conservation. Let's say a play ended with 1:45 left in the 2nd quarter. The game clock continues to run and the play clock goes to 40 and starts. With 35 seconds left on the play clock a defender has "an injury" and the game clock is stopped with 1:40 left. At the time the rules set the game clock to 25 after an administrative stop like an injury or penalty administration. This would allow the defense to conserve 10 seconds on the game clock if they are trying to get the ball back. The rule was eventually changed to set the play clock to 40 seconds after a defensive injury regardless of time of game. It prevents the defense from gaining a time advantage from either a real or fake injury and likely reduced some of the fake injuries.
 

bat123

All-American
Then, instead of all that rigamarole, why not my suggestion of three plays out, minimum. That's time enough to examine him and hold him out further, if indicated. It's also long enough to make it bite a possession. About the only weakness I see is that a coach sends out a scrub to get "hurt"...
That was my first thought when I started reading this thread, however teams that cheat successfully will continue to do so until they can be stopped somehow
 

CB4

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I agree with everything you say here. But I don't see how it relates to the original point there are rules in the NFL that don't allow a team to go as fast as NCAA. There are no rule differences affecting the pace throughout the game and the clock stoppage issue at the end of a half would cause the offense to go faster in NFL than NCAA not slower.

One thing that prevents a fake injury near the end of a half in NCAA is the play clock status after an injury. At one time the defense could gain an advantage in time conservation. Let's say a play ended with 1:45 left in the 2nd quarter. The game clock continues to run and the play clock goes to 40 and starts. With 35 seconds left on the play clock a defender has "an injury" and the game clock is stopped with 1:40 left. At the time the rules set the game clock to 25 after an administrative stop like an injury or penalty administration. This would allow the defense to conserve 10 seconds on the game clock if they are trying to get the ball back. The rule was eventually changed to set the play clock to 40 seconds after a defensive injury regardless of time of game. It prevents the defense from gaining a time advantage from either a real or fake injury and likely reduced some of the fake injuries.
Not in terms of snaps - I guarantee you if you take a NFL team in a two minute situation at the end of the half or the end or the end of a game (let’s say no TO’s) and compare it to a college team in the same situation, the college team playing under the “stoppage after a first down” will execute more snaps than the NFL. It is the same for an entire game.

Example: watch the end of Rams/Bucs playoff game. 28 seconds left. Rams with no TO’s. Ball near mid field. Pass completed in play with 20 seconds. Stafford runs team downfield, spikes ball/ time left - 4 seconds. Time left for one play. So 16 seconds have elapse. In the college game, clock would stop. Spike would happen leaving as much as 15 second the clock. Enough time for two snaps, possibly three in a college game.

The end of half of the Alabama-Auburn game in 2019; does Auburn come remotely close to position to kick the FG, much less get the FG team on the field in the NFL? No - clock stoppage after the first down led to that and “additional snap(s)” (along with a stupid review).


Playing “fast” in college is about the number snaps a teams runs. When the clock has stopped after a first down and the offense is snapping the ball with 8-10 secs off the game clock versus in the NFL after 25 seconds into a game clock it makes a big difference. Those additional snaps at the end of a half or the end of the game make a huge difference in terms of fatigue.

Why don’t NFL run uptempo all the time? Ask Chip Kelly. The biggest advantages of uptempo at the college game is fatigue factor on your opponent (pace in terms of snaps), getting mismatches versus defense, and getting the defense misaligned or making a mistake. In most cases in the NFL there isn’t a strategic advantage to going uptempo an entire game. Periodically, yes. For an entire game, no. Most teams with veteran leadership on defense in the NFL can tell you what the offense is going to do based on personnel and formation before they even get a call from the DC.

Additionally the NFL games is more “down and distance” and personnel packages for those circumstances. And there is seemingly more emphasis on the “right players on the field for the right situation”.

Pace of play IS effected by clock stoppages in colleges game. The original poster is referencing “pace” in terms of plays run offensively and TIME OFF THE GAME CLOCK (not the play clock you keep alluding to). If there isn’t advantage in running those 10-15 extra snaps in a game, Riley, Huepel, Malzahn and others wouldn’t run it.

The fake injury stuff you see in college football is as much a factor of the number of plays being run as it is anything.
 
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gman4tide

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I say that if they can’t get off on their own accord, out for the series.
To me, it's just that simple. The rule will be to address the cheaters, not injured players. If one is truly injured (and cannot get off the field), they're not going to be back in the game that series anyways. This stuff of stopping play, for what seems like forever, for a jammed finger or a shoulder stinger is crap.
 

IndyBison

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Not in terms of snaps - I guarantee you if you take a NFL team in a two minute situation at the end of the half or the end or the end of a game (let’s say no TO’s) and compare it to a college team in the same situation, the college team playing under the “stoppage after a first down” will execute more snaps than the NFL. It is the same for an entire game.

Example: watch the end of Rams/Bucs playoff game. 28 seconds left. Rams with no TO’s. Ball near mid field. Pass completed in play with 20 seconds. Stafford runs team downfield, spikes ball/ time left - 4 seconds. Time left for one play. So 16 seconds have elapse. In the college game, clock would stop. Spike would happen leaving as much as 15 second the clock. Enough time for two snaps, possibly three in a college game.

The end of half of the Alabama-Auburn game in 2019; does Auburn come remotely close to position to kick the FG, much less get the FG team on the field in the NFL? No - clock stoppage after the first down led to that and “additional snap(s)” (along with a stupid review).


Playing “fast” in college is about the number snaps a teams runs. When the clock has stopped after a first down and the offense is snapping the ball with 8-10 secs off the game clock versus in the NFL after 25 seconds into a game clock it makes a big difference. Those additional snaps at the end of a half or the end of the game make a huge difference in terms of fatigue.

Why don’t NFL run uptempo all the time? Ask Chip Kelly. The biggest advantages of uptempo at the college game is fatigue factor on your opponent (pace in terms of snaps), getting mismatches versus defense, and getting the defense misaligned or making a mistake. In most cases in the NFL there isn’t a strategic advantage to going uptempo an entire game. Periodically, yes. For an entire game, no. Most teams with veteran leadership on defense in the NFL can tell you what the offense is going to do based on personnel and formation before they even get a call from the DC.

Additionally the NFL games is more “down and distance” and personnel packages for those circumstances. And there is seemingly more emphasis on the “right players on the field for the right situation”.

Pace of play IS effected by clock stoppages in colleges game. The original poster is referencing “pace” in terms of plays run offensively and TIME OFF THE GAME CLOCK (not the play clock you keep alluding to). If there isn’t advantage in running those 10-15 extra snaps in a game, Riley, Huepel, Malzahn and others wouldn’t run it.

The fake injury stuff you see in college football is as much a factor of the number of plays being run as it is anything.
That's a valid way of saying it. There are probably other factors to offenses choosing to go up tempo, but I'm not a coach so I don't know what they are. I do remember a national championship game where Oregon faced a defense that was able to get some 3-and-out drives early in the game which took very little time off the clock because they were going so fast.

If you watch the college game more closely you will realize the play clock starts 4-6 seconds after a first down in bounds most of the game so the impact above is mostly only during the last couple minutes of a half. The referee will not wait for the ball to be spotted. I wouldn't be surprised to see the NCAA change the rule here to match what the NFL does. They may still keep the clock stoppage at the end of each half though. We've heard rumblings of that the past few years. The justification is to shorten the game, but it won't have a huge impact. Think 30 first downs each game and assume 20 of them are in bounds. Averaging 5 seconds each it will shorten the game by 1-2 minutes at most. D1 games are as long as they are because of media time outs and replay reviews. Our D3 games have neither of those and our game time is usually 2:35-:2:50.

My original point though is there is no rule preventing the NFL offense from going as fast as an NCAA offense. The game clock rules or other factors may make them choose to not go as fast, but they could if they wanted. Thank you for the clarification on the comments above.
 

AlexanderFan

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I've seen this a few times, but I'm not aware of any rule differences affecting a different pace of play. Both have a 40-second play clock and the ball is usually placed and ready for play 28-32 seconds most of the time. The official won't step away from the ball until the crew is in position and ready to officiate.
That’s why the pace is slower, nfl referees dictate the pace by ensuring the officials are in place to make proper calls. College officials let head coaches dictate to them. You have those clowns on the sidelines running up and down the field flailing their arms to go faster and the referees succumb to that pressure.

All it would take to stop the fake injuries is to call offensive penalties as they should be called.
 

Bamabuzzard

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You're right. However, there are now fewer kids joining Pee Wee and other clubs than in the past and a lot of that is due to injury concerns. Considering both solutions try to achieve the same result of reducing the number of fictional injuries impacting game play, there's no harm in putting a positive spin on it. There may not be direct liability for injuries, but basing decisions framed within the parameters of player safety as opposed to just the outcome of the game would put the schools, conferences, etc in a positive light.
Tackle football at the youth level is going away but football at the youth level isn't. Tackle football is being replaced with flag football for older youth and 7 on 7 passing leagues.
 

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