The length of college football games has been of some discussion for quite some time. Officials continue to look for ways to shorten them, but it might not exactly be for the reason you think.
Yes, the product figures to be better if it’s smoother with a shorter game and less interruptions. But it’s more so about limiting ‘exposures’ and the need to ‘protect players’ health,’ CBS Sports’ Dennis Dodd points out.
So, just how will they accomplish this? Well, there are a number of proposals on the table.
One is to mostly adopt the NFL timing rule and let the clock run after first downs, except in the last two minutes of either half. Another is to let the clock run once the ball is spotted following an incomplete pass. The former would take away about seven plays per game, while the latter would be worth about 18-20, hence the seriousness of what may seem like a crazy idea to some.
Consider that the NFL operates on about 25 fewer plays per game. Including extra points, kickoffs and two-point conversions, the NFL averages roughly 155, compared to 180 in college football.
Two other major proposals include no longer permitting consecutive timeouts to ice a kicker and no longer allowing for the extension of a period for untimed downs because of a defensive penalty. Perhaps these are less controversial than the other two, although they might still be at least to some degree.
We’ll see how it turns out, but game length remains a topic of heavy conversation. And it appears it’s becoming more and more serious by the day.