Josh Centor over at Double A Zone hints at a nice change for college football come next season. Rule 3-2-5e may die, dependent upon the NCAA Football Rules Committee's decision next week in Albuquerque, New Mexico. You remember rule 3-2-5e, right? The rule that changed how the clock was handled after kick-offs and punt returns? Well, they're thinking of reverting it back to the way it was in the good old days of 2005!
Before anyone claims responsibility, Josh outlines the best reasons for making the change:
The changes that clearly affected Division I institutions also affected Divisions II and III. At the Division II level, the number of plays was down from 68.4 per game in 2005 to 61.9 in 2006 - 6.5 plays a game (13 combined per team). Division III schools saw total plays drop from 69.5 in 2005 to 63.3 in 2006 - 6.2 plays a game (12.4 combined per team).
Coaches at this level have asked the committee to consider how the new rules have affected their division. Division III in particular - which emphasizes participation of all student-athletes on the team - has seen a negative aspect to the rules. Additionally, most Division II and III games are not on live television. The shorter game times made some fans and teams feel shortchanged.
Whooooeeeeeeeeeeeeee! More college football is better for everyone! Who didn't understand this in the first place?
Ironic that the change would be made for all the right reasons - increasing playing time and opportunities in divisions that don't get the massive amount of attention and dollars thrown at them that the big programs do.
If this were to happen, it would signal that the NCAA cares more about it's student athletes and the fans than big bucks and television contracts. People might become less cynical about the NCAA. They might be kinder to strangers, go back to helping little old ladies across the street, a kinder, gentler nation as we are supposed to be.
If I were you, and I were a big college football fan, I'd consider heading over to Josh's blog and post a comment in support of the rule change. Link to his article (or this one) on your blog and ask for the rule change to happen. The change is best for everyone but the guys who sell beer advertisements. We'll be fine if we can see more football and less beer commercials, right?