No huddle coaches weigh in on the new NCAA rules proposal
The newly proposed rule change to allow defenses 10 seconds to sub after every snap really struck a chord with a lot of coaches, especially within the no huddle coaching community, last night.
Rich Rodriguez took to Twitter to vent some of his frustration, and to be honest, I have to agree with everything that he put out there.
So I hear the football rules committee wants to slow the game down and make you wait ten seconds to snap--and penalty is delay of game!#wow— Rich Rodriguez (@CoachRodAZ) February 12, 2014
When you snap the ball has always been a fundamental edge for the offense- what's next-- 3 downs like Canada?#LetsGetBoring— Rich Rodriguez (@CoachRodAZ) February 12, 2014
Fundamental advantage for defense- pre snap movement- maybe that should be reviewed? #WhoMakesTheseRules— Rich Rodriguez (@CoachRodAZ) February 12, 2014
None of the coaches I've talked to knew about the new rule proposal regarding waiting ten seconds to snap the ball --wondering#HiddenAgenda?— Rich Rodriguez (@CoachRodAZ) February 13, 2014
Rodriguez and Hugh Freeze both added that if it is infact a safety issue, show coaches some data to support it. And if that is the case, Rodriguez makes the case that no huddle teams should be getting hurt more in practice? That's obviously not the case.
Mike Leach also brought up a good point in an ESPN article published last night, saying that football has always been a game of creativity and strategy, and the best coaches throughout history have always found a way to adjust.
"First off, I doubt it will pass, second, it’s ridiculous. All this tinkering is ridiculous." Leach explained.
"I think it deteriorates the game. It’s always been a game of creativity and strategy. So anytime someone doesn’t want to go back to the drawing board or re-work their solutions to problems, then what they do is to beg for a rule. I think it’s disgusting.”
Then, Leach provided a suggestion for coaches who are in favor of the rule change.
“My suggestion is rather than spending a bunch of time coming up with a bunch of really stupid rules, spend that time coaching harder. Worry about your own team and try to make your product better rather than trying to change the game so you don’t have to do anything.”
This will be a hot button topic all offseason, and considering the widespread impact it could have on the game, we'll continue to keep you updated on the various stances and opinions. As it sits right now, I'm standing firmly behind Rich Rod, Leach and the rest of the no huddle community and don't see that changing.
A lot more quality content on the subject from Rich Rod, Freeze, Leach (and others) in ESPN's column, which can be read here, and we've included a few more quotes from coaches on the subject below.
The only thing risking injury in an up tempo football game is the defense's pride! Nut up, it's football!— Bob Stitt (@CoachBobStitt) February 13, 2014
Baylor's Art Briles on the proposed rule change to limit hurry-up: "If the food tastes good, don't change the recipe."— George Schroeder (@GeorgeSchroeder) February 12, 2014
We got pulled over shortly after and was issued a delay of game for going to fast..#Tempo— Chad Morris (@coachchadmorris) February 13, 2014
Nebraska wants you to experience their whole season in 4 minutes
2013 was an exciting year for Nebraska.
The Huskers finished the season 9-4, capped the year off with a Gator Bowl victory against Georgia, and the season included a 99 yard passing touchdown, a 98 yard kick return for six, and a 4th and 15 conversion to set up a hail mary bomb to beat Northwestern as time expired.
That's a lot to digest, but Nebraska packed all that excitement into a video for fans, and future recruits, to live over and over again.
Video: How far will you go for respect?
Peru State, an NAIA program in Nebraska, goes through their intense off season workouts just like everyone else, but twice a week, for the first few weeks, they put 80 seconds on the clock and amp up the intensity.
When that 80 second clock starts, they start their first set of ten reps. When the clock ends, the 80 seconds immediately resets and they immediately start their second set of ten. All in all there are nine lifts done in that manner, with 3 sets of 10 as the goal.
Including "supersets", some of the lifts end up with 270 reps in 20 minutes total. We are told that the players absolutely love the challenge that it presents.
That's taking tempo in the weight room to the next level. Take a look at the tempo and intensity in the well done, movie-themed trailer, below.
NCAA proposes rules changes for 2014
For an organization that can't take one step forward without tripping over its own shoelaces, Wednesday was another perfectly acceptable day at the office. The NCAA's Football Rules Committee met in Indianapolis over the past two days, and has recommended two rules changes that could change the way games are officiated and coached beginning this fall.
Let's start with the good news.
The rules committee has recommended reversing without a doubt the worst rules alteration since its clock adjustments in 2006 (which, by the way, also lasted only one season). In 2013, when a targeting penalty was overruled by video review, the 15-yard penalty attached to the foul remained even when the flag was picked up and the defender in question got to remain in the game. It made absolutely no sense at all and, to their credit, the committee recognized that. To be clear, there will still be plenty of 15-yard flags even when a targeting foul is overturned. For instance, a linebacker flagged for targeting on a supposed above-the-neck shot that has his ejection overturned could still be flagged for unnecessary roughness. That part will have to be explained to players and fans alike.
Now, to the controversial part.
The rules committee has recommended giving the defense a 10-second substitution period after every snap, with the exception of the final two minutes of each half. Defensive coaches - led by Nick Saban and Bret Bielema, chiefly - lobbied hard over the summer and fall that hurry-up tempo offenses had an unfair advantage on defenses to the point where the game became unsafe for defenders. Whether or not you agree depends on what side of the ball you fall, but the committee agrees with them. Should the rule pass, offenses will be assessed a five-yard penalty for snapping the ball before the play clock hit 29 seconds.
"The committee discussed the issue thoroughly before coming to the conclusion that defensive teams should be allowed some period of time to substitute," Greg Johnson wrote in the NCAA's explanation. "The committee believes that 10 seconds provides sufficient time for defensive player substitutions without inhibiting the ability of an offense to play at a fast pace. Research indicated that teams with fast-paced, no-huddle offenses rarely snap the ball with 30 seconds or more on the play clock. This rules proposal also aligns with a request from the Committee on Competitive Safeguards and Medical Aspects of Sports that sport rules committees review substitution rules in regards to player safety."
Offensive coaches will fight this and do their best to kill the rule like a filibustering senator trying to kill a bill. Their lobby is bigger than their defensive counterparts. They'll have help from their friends in the national media.
Coaches: "The proposed changes are being circulated for membership comment." Better let your AD/compliance know your thoughts.— Bryan Fischer (@BryanDFischer) February 12, 2014
Prepare Big 12 coaches meltdown MT @Jonathan_Biles NCAA rules committee proposing 5yd penalty for snapping ball w 30/+ seconds on play clock— David Ubben (@davidubben) February 12, 2014
Here's a thought, Team is down by 14 points with 5:30 minutes to go in the game...is this considered a two minute situation? #JustWondering— Herb Hand (@CoachHand) February 12, 2014
................................................................................................ #NCAAFootballRulesCommitteeAndItsProposals— Matt Zemek (@MattZemek) February 12, 2014
The good news is that this isn't approved and rubber-stamped just yet. Blowback has hampered other changes. But I am enraged.— Jerry Hinnen (@JerryHinnen) February 12, 2014
But the committee has made its recommendation. The rule is on the table. For once, defense appears to be one step ahead of offense.
Here's the official NCAA statement:
By Greg Johnson
The NCAA Football Rules Committee proposed an alteration involving the instant-replay review on targeting fouls during its Feb. 11-12 meeting in Indianapolis, which includes the ejection of the player committing the foul along with a 15-yard penalty.
Last season, the targeting rule was implemented and any player committing the penalty would be ejected and his team assessed a 15-yard penalty.
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.
However, if the targeting foul is committed in conjunction with another personal foul, the 15-yard penalty for that personal foul remains. For example, if a player is called for roughing the passer and targeting the head and neck area, but the instant replay official rules that targeting did not occur, the player flagged would remain in the game, but the roughing the passer penalty would still be enforced.
All rules proposals must be approved by the NCAA Playing Rules Oversight Panel, which will discuss the football rules changes March 6. The proposed changes are being circulated for membership comment.
“Overall, the targeting rule was successful and has had the intended impact of making play safer,” said Troy Calhoun, head coach at the Air Force Academy and chair of the committee, which met Monday through Thursday in Indianapolis. “This alteration keeps the intent of the rule, but allows replay to correct all of the consequences from a rare missed call.”
In games where instant replay is not in use, the committee recommended an option to permit on-field officials to review targeting calls during halftime that were made during the first half. This is a permissive rule by conference policy or mutual consent of the teams and is the responsibility of the home team to provide the parameters for the use of video. The review must be conducted by the referee in the officials’ locker room.
Officials could then reverse the targeting call and allow the player to compete in the second half. The committee noted that many Football Championship Subdivision, Division II and Division III games are not played using instant replay so this modification gives those teams greater flexibility to review targeting fouls during a game.
The committee also recommended a rules change that will allow defensive units to substitute within the first 10 seconds of the 40-second play clock, with the exception of the final two minutes of each half, starting with the 2014 season.
“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.”
Under this rule proposal, the offense will not be allowed to snap the ball until the play clock reaches 29 seconds or less. If the offense snaps the ball before the play clock reaches 29 seconds, a 5-yard, delay-of-game penalty will be assessed. Under current rules, defensive players are not guaranteed an opportunity to substitute unless the offense substitutes first. This part of the rule will remain in place in scenarios where the play clock starts at 25 seconds.
The committee discussed the issue thoroughly before coming to the conclusion that defensive teams should be allowed some period of time to substitute. The committee believes that 10 seconds provides sufficient time for defensive player substitutions without inhibiting the ability of an offense to play at a fast pace. Research indicated that teams with fast-paced, no-huddle offenses rarely snap the ball with 30 seconds or more on the play clock. This rules proposal also aligns with a request from the Committee on Competitive Safeguards and Medical Aspects of Sports that sport rules committees review substitution rules in regards to player safety.
In the NCAA’s non-rules change years, proposals can only be made for student-athlete safety reasons or modifications that enhance the intent of a previous rules change.
American releases 2014 home/away opponents
The actual dates and ordering of the 2014 American football schedule is still a mystery, but the conference released its home/away opponents for this fall.
As a reminder, the conferences loses Louisville to the ACC and Rutgers to the Big Ten, but gains East Carolina, Memphis, Tulane and Tulsa from Conference USA. Coupled with the remaining programs - Central Florida, Cincinnati, Connecticut, Houston, South Florida, SMU and Temple - the AAC will have 11 teams in 2014. Navy comes aboard in 2015 to allow the conference to split into two divisions and hold a championship game. But for now, that's still a year away.
Each team will play four home and four away games in 2014, meaning that each team will also miss two conference opponents.
Video: Clemson offensive linemen hold a cannonball contest
The Clemson diving team held its final meet of the year on Saturday, and the Tigers' offensive line took it upon themselves to provide the halftime entertainment by holding their own cannonball contest.
As a guy who's won a cannonball contest or two in my day, I have to say most of these Tigers have some pretty terrible form. Offensive line coach Robbie Caldwell clearly needs to spend some time in spring ball teaching technique.
Photos: National Signing Day, Hawaiian style
It seems like every year around this time, someone commissions a study on which states produce the most college football signees per capita. The answer is usually Louisiana, and if it's not then it's Mississippi or Alabama. Indeed, each of those Southern bedrocks make recruiting feel like shooting fish in a mop bucket. But what about Hawaii?
With less than 100 high schools, Hawaii managed to put out 45 signees. And since, due to the time zone difference, not many on the mainland were paying any attention, one organization went out of its way to make sure those kids got the recognition they deserved. For the 10th consecutive year, the Pacific Island Athletic Association held a Signing Day event at the Sheraton Waiki for student-athletes across the islands. This year, Hawaii placed players at every level from FBS to NAIA, as well as non-scholarship commitments to West Point, Navy and Harvard.
Video: Mark Richt shows off his curling skill set
From the looks of it, when Mark Richt is snowed in down in Athens, he turns the popular Winter Olympic event curling to spend his snow days. Judging from his tweet and his enthusiasm, it looks like we also get a peek at one of his favorite winter Olympic events.
I'm really looking forward to that celebratory dance to make it's way to SEC sidelines and locker rooms on Saturday afternoons after a big Georgia win.