New clock rules to be approved for college football

Clock will keep running after first downs except during the final two minutes of each half. Division III, interestingly, did not make that change. Expected to shorten games by about 7 plays per game.

Consecutive timeouts are also banned, and a penalty on the last play of the first or third quarter will be enforced at the start of the next period.

The TV networks win again.


I don’t know why you think it matters to them. TV makes the same amount of money whether they play those extra 7 plays or not. And this is just going back to the way things were for the first 100 years of college football.

I like all those changes.

I think it matters since it makes it easier to broadcast back to back games on schedule.

For most of the first 100 years of football, there was no TV…

I realize I am not up to date on things.

They don’t care about the schedule. Haven’t since the Heidi Game in 1968, when TV learned you did not leave a game that was running long to go to other programming. ESPN particularly doesn’t care, because they’ll just start the next game on another channel or on streaming. And if next up is SportsCenter, SC can wait.

If you don’t remember the Heidi Game, NBC was showing a Jets-Raiders AFL game from Oakland in November 1968. The Raiders scored two touchdowns in the last minute to win. However, East Coast viewers didn’t see that because NBC cut away at 7 pm ET to show the movie Heidi. NBC switchboards blew up with complaints. Ever since then, they stay to the end.

I recall the Heidi game and if my memory is still there, ESPN was still the one channel from Connecticut with sports from around six PM for the rest of the day. The announcer is now retired but he was ESPN for many years.

Everything I’ve read is that the motivation is twofold: Yes, they want the games to be shorter, but it’s not because of TV. College games now average 3:30 and the trend is in the wrong direction. They want shorter games for the same reason baseball does; people tune them out, or don’t go because they’re getting home from a night game at 2 a.m. Second, they want to reduce the number of chances for players to get hurt. If the new rules shorten games by 7-10 plays, that’s 84-120 fewer “exposures”, as they call if, over the course of a season.

I know the #1 reason is money that is giving the networks what they want, but the statistics show that college football has 40 more plays a game than the NFL. I am just waiting to see the crackdown on hits on QBs in the pocket.

Hope they don’t use the extra minutes shaved from the actual game play time to insert more TV timeouts or extend the TV timeouts currently fixed throughout the games to generate more revenue. That wouldn’t surprise me in the least, everything goes back to money.

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Ys, the reason the games are too long are the commercials. Everybody knows that. Why don’t we just eliminate the game and have 3 hours of commercials. This is so stupid.

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Now if they could just do something about the final minute of a basketball game. That, to me, was a much bigger problem than the length of a football game. Though I do applaud these changes.


One way to shorten the game is to put time limits on play reviews. I’d say if a call can’t be determined in 30 seconds or so, it stands as called on the field.


Amen to that. Those endless reviews are killing me in all sports.

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I don’t like the concept of having special rules for specific times of a game. The NBA does a lot of this. The clock should either keep running after 1st downs the whole game, or stop the whole game. Why should a team down by 4 with 2:00 minutes left be rewarded just for the luck of having the ball? Why should a team in a tie game with the ball have that advantage? If it’s about safety then why exclude the last two minutes? Blahhh.

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Bingo. That is exactly what is going to happen. The exact same thing happened when they changed the rule on out of bounds plays. First, they changed the rule to keep the clock running if the offensive player was not moving forward when they went OB, then they went to re-starting the clock either way (until the last 2 or 5 min). In both instances the game got shorter so they added more commercials.

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