The NCAA: making special teams more special

The Wizard of Odds notes that one of the new NCAA rules changes proposed in the wake of the demise of Rules 3-2-5 and 3-2-5-e is likely to have a significant impact on the game next year:

… Kickoffs are moved from the 35-yard line to the 30. For the past two seasons, the rate of kickoffs per game has been just under 11. Marty from sends along this data: In 2005, kickoffs from the 35 resulted in touchbacks 30.36% of the time. From the 30, this number dropped to 8.54%. In 2006, the numbers are 28.46% and 8.43%. [Emphasis added.] With fewer touchbacks, the clock moves and the potential for big plays — something every fan cherishes — are increased. This is going to put a premium on special teams play.

In the wake of this, it will be worth watching to see if coaches change the composition of players on their kickoff teams to include more front line kids.

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