New rule regarding faking injuries in College Football

New rule regarding faking injuries in College Football

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Kyle Green started this petition to NCAA

Today in college football, a player can fake an injury in order to stop the clock with no repercussions whatsoever. A player/coach would want to do this for a number of reasons...

  1. If a team needs to take a timeout to discuss a situation and doesn't have one to use, or simply doesn't want to use a timeout.
  2. If a team is tired and needs time to rest.

This has negatively impacted the game of college football in two ways. First, this sort of behavior completely undermines the safety that we strive for regarding our college athletes. And secondly, teams with up-tempo offenses can't utilize their strategy to the fullest extent because of defensive players lying about injuries in order to stop the clock for one, or both of the two reasons above. In turn, the creativity and excitement that so many fans crave is stifled by lying and cheating. 

There needs to be a rule implemented in order to prevent this sort of behavior from happening. With this sort of rule, players with real injuries will truly be protected, and cheating/lying will be prevented. 

Here are the proposed rules-

  • If a player is injured on a play and can not make it off the field after the play is over, thus stopping the clock, then once the player is escorted to the sideline, he must stay there until the end of the series/drive.
  • If a player has a minor injury (such as a cramp), and is able to get off the field without the officials needing to assess an injury timeout, then he may return to the game at any time.
  • When the clock is stopped for an injury time-out, the officials will go review the injury. The officials will have the ability to review the injury up until, at the latest, one minute after the player has been escorted to the sideline. The time-limit will prevent long review times. During the review, if an official sees that anyone on the sideline has instructed a player on the field to fall down and fake an injury, a 15-yard unsportsmanlike penalty will be assessed. 
  • If a clock-stopping injury occurs before a play, or if an injury occurs during the substitution period prior to the ball being snapped, a five-yard delay of game penalty will be assessed.

The rules that have been proposed would improve the game of football in multiple ways.

  1. First, it would allow players who are truly injured (injured enough that they can't make it off the field) to get the rest/help they need without feeling pressure to get back into the game immediately.
  2. Second, this would prevent coaches and players from encouraging fake injuries due to the fact that players would be lost for an entire series/drive. Additionally, teams caught encouraging this behavior or trying to exploit the rules would be penalized throughout the game.

With many rules in football, coaches like to find loopholes in order to have advantages over opponents. This rule would discourage teams from using loopholes to continue faking injuries-

  • The only way a coach could exploit this rule is by substituting expendable players into the game in order to fake an injury to stop the clock. A coach might think that by substituting a worse player into the game and having that player fake an injury, he might be able to gain a time-out and also keep his better players on the field. However, this coach would also be taking a risk. Because of the current substitution rules that exist, the opposing team would be able to see this expendable substitute and exploit the less talented player. Therefore, loopholes to this new rule would be rendered useless.

In conclusion, this proposed rule would greatly improve the game of college football by keeping players safer and adding needed accountability. I encourage you to careful consider the changes proposed in this petition and sign it if you feel compelled.

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