College football rules that should be changed

It’s Wednesday and that means it’s college football roundtable time here at The Student Section. TSS Associate Editors Bart Doan and Terry Johnson join Kevin Causey and a rotating guest in our weekly roundtables discussing all things college football.

Last week we discussed which college football conference would be the best in 2015 and if conferences should be able to have multiple bids in the College Football Playoff. Joining us today for our morning discussion is Senator Blutarsky of Get the Picture, a Georgia Bulldogs site that also looks at the bigger picture of the college football world.

Question: What is one college football rule you would like to see changed?

Senator Blutarsky:

On Twitter @MummePoll:

Were I the god-king of college football for one day, I’d reinstate freshman ineligibility, of course… oh, wait. That’s Jim Delany’s answer.

As a run-of-the-mill fan, instead, I’m tempted to say just enforce the holding rule that’s already on the books for offensive linemen, but since we’re looking for a rule change, I’ve got a simple one: prohibit FBS schools from playing lower-division programs. With the kind of money we’re asked to shell out for tickets these days, the least ADs can do is to schedule an opponent with 85 players on scholarship. If they want a cupcake, they can always go to a bakery. Or the Sun Belt.

Bart Doan:

On Twitter @TheCoachBart

As much as I abhor the “ball touches the pylon on a fumble, it’s a touchback” rule, it doesn’t hold the personal disdain that the excessive celebration rule does. It’s the most idiotic rule in sports, penalizing guys for having fun when they accomplish something. For those old codgers that think “just hand the ball to the refs” or that actual enjoyment sullies the game, look at soccer. You’d have thought it was the end scene in “Independence Day” when humans finally realized they defeated the aliens every time someone scores a goal.

On top of that, it’s fairly cherry picked as to who and how you go about breaking this rule. Routinely, defensive players get to the quarterback, put him down, and then act like they just split the atom, or at minimum, won $50 on a scratch off lottery ticket. Rarely, if ever, is that penalized as excessive.

So basically, what you have is a stupid penalty taking the fun, human emotion of sports and making sure you don’t have too much fun, human emotion. Act like a CEO, not a college student. But only in certain situations. Knock the quarterback silly, we’ll go ahead and look the other way.

Kevin Causey:

On Twitter @CFBZ

College football will never be fair or played on an even playing field, but there is one rule that just irks me to no end. And that’s because schools can enforce it however they feel. It’s drug testing and suspensions.

Here’s what the NCAA has to say about drug testing…

What is the penalty for failing a school-issued drug test?

Each NCAA member is responsible for determining whether to establish an institutional drug-testing program, at which time the school would be responsible for determining applicable penalties. If a testing program is established, though, the school is obligated to enforce the penalties. Failure to do so can lead to NCAA sanctions.

The NCAA does have an official drug testing policy but to my knowledge, with the exception of large events, they generally leave this up to the schools. And there is a large gap in how the schools test and how (and if) they penalize.

When the NFL combine comes around we always hear about players who had drug problems at schools and failed multiple tests at their school but when you look back they didn’t miss any games. Then, you have other schools who have a player who failed one drug test and they miss multiple games. In some cases, cough…Oklahoma State…cough, players won’t get suspended depending on how much they mean to the team.

This is one area I’d like to see the playing field leveled. I don’t care if the drug testing is looser or stricter. In fact, I would say to loosen the drug testing on certain drugs (like Marijuana, which has been legalized in multiple states) and stiffen up the penalties on the hard stuff and PEDs.

Even if it’s just uniforming the testing and penalties within each conference, I feel that this needs to be addressed.

Terry Johnson:

On Twitter @SectionTPJ

I would amend the transfer rule to allow a player to transfer without penalty if his head coach, coordinator, or position coach leaves at the end of the season.

Let’s be honest: the rule as it exists right now doesn’t make sense. While coaches can come and go as they please, student-athletes are expected to honor their commitment for the next four-to-five years – regardless of the circumstances.

Not convinced? Consider the following scenarios:

  • A student-athlete signs a letter of intent expecting to play in a pro-style offense, but the head coach leaves and is replaced with someone who runs nothing but the triple option.
  • An all-conference safety gets switched to linebacker in a move that seems to make sense to the head coach but absolutely no one else.
  • A recruit goes to the school specifically to play for a coach with a reputation for getting players to the next level, but the coach gets promoted to coordinator at another school.

Assuming that none of them would qualify as a graduate transfer, each of these players would have to sit out a season if he decided to continue his career at another FBS program.

I have a big problem with that. It’s hypocritical to allow a coach to move on to greener pastures without penalty when they don’t get what they were promised, while the players must either “grin and bear it” or sit out for a year.

My proposed rule change would level the playing field. By allowing a player to transfer if his coach leaves the program, the student-athlete has the option to do what’s best for himself and his family, rather than try to spend a season (or seasons) attempting to make lemonade out of lemons.

This modification to the transfer rule would also benefit position coaches. Unlike head coaches and some coordinators who have multi-year contracts, position coaches often work on a yearly basis and make significantly less money. Should my proposal go into effect, schools would have to treat every assistant coach like gold or risk losing players over it.


Previous Roundtables

Which returning starter at QB will show the most improvement in 2015?

Which first year starter at QB is poised to have a breakout season?

Which non-Power 5 QB do you want as the face of your franchise?

Which Power 5 quarterback do you want as the face of your franchise?

If you could have attended any game in the history of college football what would it be?

Reliving our favorite college football memories

Who was the greatest team in the history of college football?

Who was the most underrated team in college football history?

In a one-game scenario, which college football coach would you turn to for a win?

Which coach would you turn to if building a program from scratch?

Which teams have the best QB groups heading into 2015?

What will make 2015 a successful season for Notre Dame?

Where should Braxton Miller play in 2015?

Changes we would make to CFB Playoff Committee

Who will the media vilify in 2015?

Which college football conference will be the best in 2015?

Should conference’s be allowed multiple bids in CFB Playoffs?