Sunday, November 05, 2006

The 3-2-5-e Loophole Is Exploited


Wisconsin coach Bret Bielema exploits the new 3-2-5-e rule, designed to shorten games. After scoring a touchdown with 23 seconds left in the first half against Penn State, the Badgers successfully run out the clock and keep the Penn State offense off the field by twice being offsides on the kickoff. As for shortening the game, this clip is 6:06 long (worth every second, in our opinion), meaning the final 23 seconds took much longer to run under 3-2-5-e than it would have under the old rules. And a good job by analyst Paul Maguire for picking up on what Bielema was up to. Because the rules can't be changed in the middle of the season, we can only hope other coaches do the same to hasten the repeal of 3-2-5-e in the offseason.
Update: We have our first incident of a coach copying Bielema's move. North Dakota State's Craig Bohl, who watched the Penn State-Wisconsin game, used Bielema's tactics during the Bison's 28-24 victory over dreaded California Davis. And please check out the rest of our humble blog.

18 comments:

Kevin said...

as the Guiness guys would say...

Brilliant!

Tar Heel Fan said...

I think Bielema was making a point about the rule. Penn State getting the ball on the 20 or 30 with 14 seconds left is not enough time for anything. I think Bielema decided if the situation presented itself to exploit the rule just to show how stupid it is.

Jack said...

"good job by analyst Paul Maguire"... I think that's the first time the phrase has ever been uttered.

Anonymous said...

couldn't penn state have just declined the penalty and taken the ball wherever they ran it back to with 20 seconds left?

Vance23 said...

1. I too don't understand why PSU didn't deline the penalty.

2. I don't blame JoePa for calling for unsportsmanship. However, his team sure didn't get all that fired up about it in the 2nd half.

Anonymous said...

Doesn't the NFL apply an offsides on the kick to the end of the run and not have a rekick? Pretty big oversight on NCAA's part.

Anonymous said...

Vance23 said...
1. I too don't understand why PSU didn't deline the penalty.


If memory serves me correctly, one cannot decline a dead ball foul in your favor.

But with this screwy new rule... who knows what a dead ball is anymore and since the offsides technically occurs before the kick, the ball has not yet been put in play.

I could see a coach get fooled by this tatic once... but he||, if Paul Maguire picked up on it, then certainly any coach at this level knew what was going on and thus would have declined the penalty if they had the option to do so.

Anonymous said...

PSU could have tried the old Cal vs. Stanford KO return play. Even if fumbled, they just get a rekick.

The rule clearly is stupid.

Maybe ESPN will allow the NCAA to go back to the old clock rules at the end of each half. Say the last two minutes.

Anonymous said...

They could have taken the penalty. Alvarez has made a statement in responce to this to clarify why they don't. If you watch the video, some of the guys are about 25-30 yards offsides, so the 5 yard penalty would have given them the ball on the 10 yard line. Penn State isn't going to move the ball that far that fast.

Anonymous said...

I can't wait until they change that rule back. It's sad that a douche bag on Wisconsin had to show everybody that the rule sucks.....

Anonymous said...

Wow this was just great...but the rules are horrible. The fact that the game can end because a team has to run onto the field for a hail mary type of thing is just stupid.

Gotta love seeing JoePa get pissed though.

Andrew said...

The best thing about it was Brad Nessler saying, "Paul Maguire actually got something right."

Dirk Calloway said...

Even if you decline a penalty, I don't think that puts time back on the clock does it?

Anonymous said...

You typically don't put time back on the clock after declining a penalty like that. However, there are rules that give the refs the right to do that, and to hit them with a 15-yard unsportsmanlike for "cheating the game" type reasons.

This isn't a dead-ball foul like a false start is. The offsides guys aren't committing a penalty until the ball is kicked. I think a solution might be for the up men on the receiving team to run into them or block them, which would be illegal contact (I think), which would be a penalty with no time running.

Another way to do this trick without being offsides would be to tap the ball a couple inches, then stand around it and block the other team away from it while the seconds ticked away.

Anonymous said...

"Another way to do this trick without being offsides would be to tap the ball a couple inches, then stand around it and block the other team away from it while the seconds ticked away."

I like this one

Anonymous said...

"Another way to do this trick without being offsides would be to tap the ball a couple inches, then stand around it and block the other team away from it while the seconds ticked away."

Yes but if you don't manage to run off the clock completely, the other team is only 40 or so yards from the end zone.

Anonymous said...

Talk about backfiring. When Wisconsin kicked properly, they got the ball back off a fumble. If they didn't screw around the first 2 times, they could have had the ball within field goal range.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

"Another way to do this trick without being offsides would be to tap the ball a couple inches, then stand around it and block the other team away from it while the seconds ticked away."

Yes but if you don't manage to run off the clock completely, the other team is only 40 or so yards from the end zone.


just make sure you fall on the ball when the other team gets close, and it is a ten yard penalty and a rekick, I think.