Here’s something the Wiz of Odds posted a few years ago in the wake of 2008’s new clock rules…
… Given the lack of protest from the rest of the coaching fraternity, there is a strong possibility that the 40/25 rules could be here to stay. That would swing open the doors for more commercialization and the likelihood that in two or three years the length of games will once again be pushing the 3:20 mark.
Take notice of what’s happening. Long commercial breaks often suck the energy out of the stadium. For fans sitting at home, commercials are now being inserted after kickoffs, following the NFL blueprint.
And something I wrote in response to another post of his:
Subjectively speaking, it strikes me that coaches seem to be able to affect the pace of the game more than before, particularly in terms of how the 40-second clock is utilized.
Well, guess what? It sounds like it’s time to take another look at the clock rules.
All that scoring caused this season’s average length of game to hit 3 hours, 23 minutes in late November, according to the NCAA. That was up from 3:17 last season. Games are, on average, 14 minutes longer than in 2008. By comparison, this season’s NFL average is 3:07.
“I think it’s trending in the wrong direction, and it is a concern,” American Athletic Conference commissioner Mike Aresco said.
Administrators are wary of turning off fans, especially young ones who crave faster action and represent future ticket buyers. They also are mindful of the risk of injury to fatigued players who are on the field longer and for more plays.
The NCAA Football Rules Committee expects to discuss the issue when it meets in February, secretary-rules editor Rogers Redding said.
“The 14-minute increase has been gradual” since 2008, he wrote in an email to The Associated Press, “but the cumulative effect has generated some concern among some stakeholders so that it is probably something that the committee will want to take a look at.”
Turning off fans? Increased injury risk? Nice concerns, y’all, but there are so many other things happening in college football that undercut both, you’ll have to excuse me if I’m not buying your crocodile tears act. This, though?
Mid-American Conference commissioner Jon Steinbrecher, who chairs the College Football Officiating Board of Managers, said it’s imperative to keep the average game under 3:30. That figure coincides with the typical window TV networks allot for a game.
“A shorter game is better than a longer game. That’s painting with a broad brush,” Steinbrecher said. “If a game is exciting, I suppose it doesn’t matter how long it takes. We ought to probably be in that 3:15 to 3:20 range.”
Yeah, that’s gonna be a problem.
You know, I kid about Jim Delany being more a director of broadcast programming than a conference commissioner. Maybe college football ought to eliminate the middleman and pick somebody from ESPN to become the first college football commissioner. At least it would all be out in the open. And maybe they’d quit blaming us for their problems.
Though college football attendance remains robust, administrators are always looking for ways to draw fans away from their high-definition TVs at home and to the stadium. Once there, they need to be entertained when the game is in a lull.
Some schools have hired “fan experience” directors to keep game day fun. Wifi has been enhanced at stadiums, and bigger-than-ever video boards have been installed. Still, many schools are seeing declines in student ticket sales. Those students represent the future fan base.
“People want the experience,” said Jim Kahler, executive director of Ohio University’s Center for Sports Administration, “but they want it convenient and they want it fast.”
Just go ahead and shoot me.