Saturday, July 29, 2006

New Rule Will Cut 20-30 Plays From a Game

The new 3-2-5-e rule, which mandates the clock being started when the ball is marked ready to play after a change of possession, will cut between 20-30 plays from your average game. How do we arrive at this number? A change of possession is a kickoff, punt, interception or fumble. Let us say there are seven kickoffs, eight punts, three fumbles and two interceptions in a game. That is a total of 20 plays. Not unreasonable. Previously, the game clock did not start until the ball was snapped. No more under 3-2-5-e. As soon as the ball is marked, the game and play clocks will start. So teams must shuttle offenses and defenses on the field while the game and play clocks are running and get the play off. This will no doubt take up nearly all of the allotted 25 seconds, time that did not run off the game clock before the passage of 3-2-5-e. We can't stress how much an impact this is going to have on games. This is one of the biggest rules changes in years. Remember this when point totals come out for week one because the unders will no doubt be worth a close look. The rationale behind this rule change was to cut the length of the average game by five minutes. We ask why? The popularity of college football is at an all-time high. Will five minutes send the sport plunging into oblivion? No. But if you want to push it off that slope, cutting 20-30 plays is a good place to start.


Anonymous said...

i will be very surprised if teams do not adjust to the new rule after a few games, and I will be shocked if at the end of the year if the total plays run is -20/game. To be honest, I see no good reason offenses/defenses can't quickly take the field on possession changes (especially after punts/kickoffs, but even on the more unpredictable turnovers). Prior to this year's World Cup I never particularly cared for soccer, but non-stop action for two 45 minute periods is impressively athletic. With the clearly defined possessions of American Football, it is not too much to ask of our players to be ready to play when needed.

Anonymous said...

One forgotten component is that it will apply differently for televised games due to TV timeouts coming on change of posessions--- in TV games a loss of 20 plays is probably unlikely. In games that are not televised, it may be worth checking unders in week one.

Anonymous said...

No way does this cut 20-30 plays from a game when the Red Hat is calling for a TV timeout after most possession changes. The impact will be much greater in the lower divisions, which is exactly where it's not needed because they don't have the long television timeouts. Silliness, thy name is NCAA.