Mt. Vernon Register-News

Z_CNHI News Service

February 18, 2014

Limiting college football's offense creates clear winners and losers

The NCAA rules committee will take a hard look at a simple college football question when it meets on March 6: More plays or fewer ones?

A proposed rule would prohibit offenses from snapping the ball into action until 29 seconds or fewer remain on the 40-second play clock. The current rule permits a center to hike the ball immediately after it has been set for play.

Proponents of the change – namely Alabama’s Nick Saban and Arkansas’ Bret Bielema – say it’s a question of player safety. The current rule makes it difficult for defenses to make substitutions. There’s simply not enough time to get players off and on the field against a no-huddle or hurry-up offense.

Limiting how quickly plays begin will benefit the defense, especially one stacked with talent that can be inserted into the game against various down and yardage situations. And that explains the furious reaction from coaches who have employed quick-striking, elaborate offensive schemes designed to score points in bundles.

Auburn’s Gus Malzahn, Texas A&M’s Kevin Sumlin and Washington State’s Mike Leach dismiss the idea to slow the pace of the game as a joke.

How can you blame them? They want a chance to score before the defense gets set.

The difference between teams that employ fast-paced offenses and those dedicated to defense are significant. Texas Tech led the nation’s offenses, averaging 90.3 plays per game, followed by Brigham Young, which averaged 89.9 plays.

Contrast that with Saban and Bielema’s teams. Alabama’s offense ran on average 65.9 plays, while Arkansas made 67.7 attempts.

The difference offers a clear insight into the coaches' strategic thinking and approaches to managing football games.

The offense’s advantage is twofold: It knows the play and when it’s coming. The defense’s strength is that players can continuously move to different spots on the field to enhance their chances of stopping a run or pass.

Text Only
Z_CNHI News Service
  • Screen shot 2014-04-18 at 4.44.15 PM.png Paint, doodle and sketch: 3 apps for art lovers

    In the absence of a palette of watercolors and a sketchpad, these three apps can fill in as your art supplies of choice.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Why do wolves howl?

    Of all the myths that dog the wolf, none is more widely accepted than the idea that wolves howl at the moon. Images of wolves with their heads upturned, singing at the night sky, are as unquestioned as a goldfish's three-second memory or a dog's color-blindness (both also myths).

    April 18, 2014

  • quake.jpg Pennsylvania won’t take action following Ohio ruling on quakes, fracking

    Pennsylvania officials plan no action despite new Ohio rules on drilling that affect a seismically active area near the state line.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • taylor.armerding.jpg Warren's populist pitch on student loans is off key

    Sen. Elizabeth Warren's populist rhetoric pumps up students about their loan burdens, but she conveniently neglects to mention the real problem - the exorbitant cost of college - much less how she's benefitted from those high prices.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Golf turns into snooze-fest without celebrities like Tiger and Phil

    The Masters lumbered on last week without two of pro golf's biggest names, Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson, and fans changed the channel. The PGA needs someone with star power if it's going to lure people back to the game.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • The case for separate beds

    The other night I slept on a twin bed in the guest room of the house I share with my husband and our two kids.
    It was the best night's sleep I've had in years.

    April 17, 2014

  • Raw oysters spike U.S. rise in bacterial infections, CDC reports

    Raw oysters, so good with hot sauce, increasingly can carry something even more unsettling to the stomach: A bacteria linked to vomiting, diarrhea and pain.

    April 17, 2014

  • Low blood-sugar levels make for grousing spouses

    Husbands and wives reported being most unhappy with their spouses when their blood-sugar levels were lowest, usually at night, according to research released this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Missing a meal, dieting or just being hungry may be the reason, researchers said.

    April 16, 2014

  • Screen Shot 2014-04-16 at 12.51.22 PM.png VIDEO: Toddler climbs into vending machine

    A child is safe after climbing into and getting stuck inside a claw crane machine at a Lincoln, Neb., bowling alley Monday.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • portraitoflotte.jpg VIDEO: From infant to teen in four minutes

    Dutch filmmaker Frans Hofmeester’s time lapse video of his daughter, Lotte — created by filming her every week from her birth until she turned 14 — has become a viral sensation.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

Twitter Updates
Facebook
Stocks