Tag Archive | NCAA

NCAA Proposes to Slow Down College Football Offenses

By Nick Vespasiano

The NCAA has proposed a new rule that would prevent the offense from snapping the ball for the first 10 seconds of the play clock. With offenses running more plays than ever before, the NCAA Football Rules Committee believes giving defensive players time to substitute would improve player safety.

A February 12th press release on NCAA.org, “The committee believes that 10 seconds provides sufficient time for defensive player substitutions without inhibiting the ability of an offense to play at a fast pace…This rules proposal also aligns with a request from the Committee on Competitive Safeguards and Medical Aspects of Sports that sport rules committees review substitution rules in regards to player safety.”

If the offense snaps the ball before the 10 seconds they receive a five-yard delay-of-game penalty. The rule would not be in effect the last two minutes of each half. Some head coaches have voiced their opinions.

Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy expressed his opinion February 13th on twitter, “The no huddle, fast tempo style has changed the game of CFB. Our sport has exploded in popularity with high scoring games & packed stadiums.” A relevant point when college football attendance is on the decline. A recent article on ESPN.com by Darren Rovell reported “attendance for FBS schools dropping below 46,000 per game for the past five seasons.” (http://espn.go.com/college-football/story/_/id/10458047/next-generation-ticket-holder-concern-students-show-college-football-games). These fast offenses are fun to watch but this rule change could hurt the already dropping attendance numbers.

Alabama coach Nick Saban was present at the Rules Committee meeting where this rule was introduced. Saban sounded off two seasons ago  about a need for a rules change in an October 3rd , 2012 teleconference: “I think that the way people are going no-huddle right now, that at some point in time, we should look at how fast we allow the game to go in terms of player safety. The team gets in the same formation group, you can’t substitute defensive players…That’s when guys have a much greater chance of getting hurt when they’re not ready to play.”

Alabama's Nick Saban is one coach who would not like to see the new rule put into place (Via AP)

Alabama’s Nick Saban is one coach who would not like to see the new rule put into place (Via AP)

Alabama’s only losses in the regular season came against Texas A&M and Auburn, two of the country’s best up-tempo offenses. Oklahoma also used some no-huddle offense to their advantage in their 45-31 defeat of the Tide in the Sugar Bowl. The no-huddle can clearly work against Alabama. Many people, myself included, think Saban wants this rule change so his defenses can continue dominate.

Some Saban-style teams, however, have managed success in stopping face paced offenses. Stanford, a team known for its slow, ground-and-pound offense held Oregon and UCLA to 20 and 10 points respectively. They also beat Arizona State twice, another team with a solid no-huddle attack. Michigan State, for example, held Ohio State’s fast paced offense to its lowest point total of the season in the Big 10 Championship Game.

Auburn head coach Gus Malzahn has been outspoken against the rule change, stating in a press conference,“there’s absolutely zero evidence, documented evidence, that is hazardous on the pace of play, only opinions.” He also pointed out the rule change would make it more difficult for a team to come back late in the game.

NCAA national coordinator of officiating, Rogers Redding told CBSsports.com on February 13th, “I think it’s fair to say there’s not really much hard data on this.”

A website cfbmatrix.com has been putting together data on pace of play and its effect on injuries. His data reflected the Big 12 conference ran the most plays of the five BCS conferences between 2009-12 and had the fewest “starts lost to injury” of the five conferences. Alabama lost 30 starts to injury from 2010-12 despite being in the bottom 10 of plays run per game. Compare that with Oregon which lost only 18 starts between 2009-10. The most glaring stat of all though was in 2012, the top 15 teams in plays-per-game had eight less “starts lost to injury” than the 15 slowest teams.

To become official, this rule will have to pass the NCAA Playing Rules Oversight Panel on March 6. Hopefully the panel makes their decision based on the evidence.

______________________________________________________________

Nick Vespasiano is a senior English major at St. Olaf College and aspiring sports writer. He was raised in Minnesota, favorite teams are the Vikings, Wild, and Twins. Favorite athletes are Randy Moss and Jaromír Jágr.

BU Zoo Gives Binghamton Bearcats Some Noise

←BACK TO THE NEW BU ZOO WEBSITE

By Brett Malamud

It has been an up and down season for the Binghamton Bearcats. Currently they are 4-19 overall and 1-9 in the America East Conference. Last season, they brought in new head coach Tommy Dempsey, a 119 game winner at Rider, but went on to finish the 2012-13 season with a total of three wins. Each game, the 5,000-seat Events Center barely reached 2,000 in attendance. Attending each game was a difficult thing for me to do, while anticipating an upcoming loss in an empty arena each time. The fact that I am a huge fan of college basketball is probably the reason I decided to attend every single game anyway.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

This season, while the record just isn’t there at home, the crowd noise has been. The student section, the BU Zoo, has been there for the Bearcats the entire season.  But the BU Zoo is more than a student cheering section- it is a movement. It began with simply designing a great logo, slapping that logo on t-shirts, and giving the shirts away to students. Soccer season came in the early Fall, and the Zoo began to grow with a couple hundred students attending the games. The Zoo became good friends with some of the soccer players and then some basketball players as well. Then opening night of basketball season came. As I walked down to the Events Center, excited for a new season of college basketball, I thought to myself “Are we even going to have anyone show up tonight?”

Events Center Opening Night 2013-14 (Via Brett Malamud)

Events Center Opening Night 2013-14 (Via Brett Malamud)

BU Zoo Opening Night 2013-14 (Via Brett Malamud)

BU Zoo Opening Night 2013-14 (Via Brett Malamud)

That night, 4,318 fans, showed up at a packed Events Center. The BU Zoo was filled to the top that night with students wearing green. But that wasn’t the end of it. The trend continued, with a couple hundred students showing up for each game. But then another major breakthrough came for the Zoo when the Bearcats faced Stony Brook University at the Events Center on Tuesday night.

Back on January 15th, the Bearcats lost on Long Island to the America East conference leading Seawolves by 22. As I attended the game on Long Island, I noticed that the Bearcats didn’t really prove to be any competition for the Seawolves, so I was a little nervous about Tuesday. But the Zoo showed up in full force for a game that was nationally broadcasted on ESPN3. A confirmed 1,200 students showed up out of the 4,635 fans for the game and sat with the Zoo. Complete with their own fan mascot Mr. Green, the Zoo did not sit down and was loud for the game’s entirety.

The BU Zoo's fan mascot, Mr. Green (Via Binghamton University)

The BU Zoo’s fan mascot, Mr. Green (and myself to the right of him)  (Via Binghamton University)

This greatly factored into Stony Brook’s lack of production and Binghamton proceeded to take a surprising 23-18 lead into halftime. The Bearcats made it a game throughout but eventually lost the game in the final minute. Losing by five to a team that is likely to be representing the America East Conference in the NCAA tournament is something that the Bearcats should be very proud of. The Zoo received praise from coach Tommy Dempsey in a letter regarding the noise level during the game.

On behalf of the Athletic Department, coaches, and our players I would like to thank you for your enthusiastic support for our team on Tuesday night vs. Stony Brook. I just want to make sure you all know that it gives our players a tremendous emotional lift when the BU Zoo is rocking like that. We are working hard everyday to improve and to reward your loyalty with some big wins to close out this season. We hope to see you all again on Saturday afternoon at 2pm. Thanks again and GO BEARCATS!

Tommy Dempsey

And when we all thought it was over, the Zoo received another huge praise, this time on ESPN’s Pardon The Interruption from the show’s host, Binghamton alumni Tony Kornheiser. The BU Zoo has been rocking and will continue to rock the house for seasons to come.

 

For more information about the BU Zoo,VISIT THEIR NEW WEBSITE,  like their Facebook page, and follow them on twitter at @The_BU_Zoo

BU Zoo Logo (Via BU Zoo)

BU Zoo Logo (Via BU Zoo)

←BACK TO THE NEW BU ZOO WEBSITE


 

Brett Malamud is a Computer Science Major at Binghamton University. He is the co-founder of dabuzzza.com. His favorite athletes are Derek Jeter and Todd Bertuzzi. You can follow him on twitter at @brettnyy

Broadway Johnny?

By Brett Malamud

Finally the time has come and the wait is over. After making his mark in the NCAA, Johnny Manziel has declared himself eligible for this year’s NFL draft. The Heisman winner is a projected top-ten pick with many even placing him in the top-five. While Manziel is a scrambling quarterback, he averaged 317 passing yards per game for a total of 4117 yards. This is 408 yards more than he threw for last season, a season in which he won the Heisman Trophy. In improving his passing game, Manziel had to take a step back in tucking the football and running. He rushed for only 53% of what he had rushed in 2012. However in the end, the touchdown totals remain to be consistent. Manziel finished with 47 touchdowns in 2012 and 46 touchdowns in 2013. Not too shabby when you consider the fact that Manziel threw for more yards than Andrew Luck did in any of his seasons at Stanford.

Manziel does have his problems though. He has been in the news for his behavioral issues. He was arrested back in 2012 for getting in a late night fight and possessing a fake ID. The issues continued even after he won the Heisman Trophy. He overslept while attending the Manning Passing Academy. He was kicked out of a University of Texas fraternity party. He also voiced his displeasure with Texas A&M by tweeting that he “can’t wait to leave College Station” after he received a parking ticket. His taunting on the field became quite the story during the 2013 season, and was regularly featured on ESPN. But the most notable issue came in early August 2013. The NCAA began investigating whether Manziel accepted payments from autographs that he had signed in January 2013. While it is widely believed that he did accept the money, the NCAA could not find any evidence and suspended him for only the first half of the season opener against Rice.

Johnny Manziel will enter the 2014 NFL draft as one of the top quarterbacks available (via Scott Halleran/Getty Images)

Johnny Manziel will enter the 2014 NFL draft as one of the top quarterbacks available (via Scott Halleran/Getty Images)

Right now if you look at the NFL draft order, Houston has the first pick. The Texans need a quarterback and are expected to draft Louisville QB Teddy Bridgewater. The St. Louis Rams have the second pick and while it seems that they might need a quarterback, they have showed no indication that they want to dump Sam Bradford. The third and fourth picks belong to the Jacksonville Jaguars and Cleveland Browns respectfully. Both teams need a quarterback. The Oakland Raiders sit in the five spot and the Vikings sit at the eight spot. It’s possible that they could each want to draft a QB as well. UCF quarterback Blake Bortles is on the board as well but it’ll be interesting to see which QB gets drafted first.

An interesting pick for Manziel though could be the New York Jets. The Jets currently hold the 18th pick. Now I’m not saying that Manziel is going to slip to the 18th pick. We did see Brady Quinn slip to the 22nd pick back in 2007, after being projected to go in the top ten. Manziel is not likely to slip based on the amount of teams needing quarterbacks. Therefore, only way the Jets can get Manziel will be by trading up picks to draft him. I think that a run at Manziel could be what the Jets need. Now I know some people look and they’ll say, “why would they do that?” Well, they’ve done it before. Back in 2009, the Jets traded up to the fifth pick to select USC quarterback Mark Sanchez. Now I know that didn’t turn out to be such a great decision now that Sanchez has lost the starting position, but Manziel is a bigger threat than Sanchez ever was. The Jets current starting quarterback, Geno Smith, had the lowest QB rating in the entire league. General Manager John Idzik stated at the end of their week 17 game that they will “look at quarterbacks” in the offseason. It is this statement that shows that Idzik doesn’t believe that Smith is “the guy.” If the Jets want to get their hands on a reliable quarterback for years to come, they must trade up and select Johnny Manziel.

______________________________________________________________

Brett Malamud is a Computer Science Major at Binghamton University. He is the co-founder of dabuzzza.com. His favorite athletes are Derek Jeter and Todd Bertuzzi. You can follow him on twitter at @brettnyy